I. Ensure Program Stability for Districts
- State Aid – Maintain Foundation Aid Formula
II. Maintain Core State Education Department Operations
Fee Increases (no General Fund Impact)
Program Area: Cultural Education
- Stabilize funding for the Cultural Education (CE) Account $7.50 fee increase
The Cultural Education account was created by an act of the Legislature in 2002, which also transferred to it all Office of Cultural Education functions previously supported by state General Fund operations appropriations. It provides a major share of the operational funding for the State Museum, State Archives, State Library, and Office of Public Broadcasting and Educational Television. The fund also provides annual support of $1,200,000 to the General Fund; $1,000,000 to the Summer School for the Arts; up to $650,000 for the Empire State Performing Arts Center program; and up to $3,272,300 for the New York State Theater Institute program.
The CE account is modeled after the Local Government Records Management Improvement Fund (LGRMIF), which provides funding for local government grants and related operations. LGRMIF is funded by a county-collected surcharge of $5.00 for recording, entering, indexing, or endorsing a certificate on any instrument or for assigning an index number to actions pending in county court or Supreme Court. The 2002 statutory change kept the LGRMIF charge in place and applied an additional $15.00 surcharge to support the new CE account. Counties retain $.25 of each LGRMIF surcharge and $.75 of each CE account surcharge to defray their collection expense.
The balance in the CE account has experienced increases and decreases over the life of the fund. This is due to national and state economic conditions at any given time that have suppressed the housing market and, therefore, affected the number of transactions subject to the surcharge. Annual revenue from fees has declined more than 32 percent from the historically high levels of the first several years and revenue from interest has declined 84 percent from two years ago and will disappear by next year. Annual revenue (before transfers out of the fund) is now below the cost of operating the Office of Cultural Education’s programs. The current economic downturn has reduced revenue severely, causing the account balance to decline sharply. Reserve funds will be exhausted within the next year.Legislation is needed to amend the current fee structure to provide an additional $7.50 surcharge, including $.25 to be retained by the counties.
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Program Area: The Professions
- Stabilize funding for the Profession Revenue Account 10% fee increase
The licensing fees for the professions have not increased since the 1980s even though statutes have been enacted mandating that SED establish and regulate numerous new professional licenses and programs. Legislation is needed to give SED authority to implement a 10 percent across-the-board fee increase, which would enable us to fully discharge our responsibility to protect the public. The requested fee increase would allow the Office of the Professions to investigate and prosecute illegal practice, upgrade outdated technology, investigate and prosecute more discipline cases and secure expert witnesses, cover the increase in expense for providing peer assistance to nurses in the Professional Assistance Program, fully fund meetings of the state boards, cover the increased cost to manage the licensee photo ID program and pay credit card company fees for licensees who use our online registration.
Level Funding for General Fund State Operations
Program Area: P-16 - EMSC
Accountability - The 2008-2009 appropriation for accountability funds was $13.5 million. Continued funding is necessary to continue the work started in 2007 including, but not limited to, the following:
- Review and Revise all Learning Standards Beginning w/ELA & Math - Staff will compile scientific, evidence-based research, work with regional and national experts and coordinate an interdisciplinary PreK-16 Committee to renew the learning standards in all content areas, provide teacher professional development and work with the higher education community to ensure the new standards are taught.
- Develop and Implement a Value Added Assessment Model - By 2010-2011, the Regents will implement a value added accountability model based upon revised or new assessments.
- Contracts for Excellence (C4E) - Section 211-D of the Enacted Budget requires Contracts for Excellence to be completed by all districts receiving an increase in foundation aid greater than $15 million or 10 percent or a supplemental educational improvement plan grant and having at least one low-performing school. Districts subject to the provisions under Section 211-D shall publicly report the expenditure of total foundation aid in the form and manner prescribed by the Commissioner. The Department shall develop the methodology for reporting school based expenditures for these districts.
- School Improvement - The Regents must expand the Schools Under Registration Review process so that all schools that meet the criteria for SURR are identified, with the goal that up to 5 percent of public schools are identified between the 2007-2008 and 2010-2011 school years. School Quality Review Teams will be appointed by the Commissioner to assist any school in improvement, corrective action, restructuring or SURR status.
- Pre-Kindergarten / Early Childhood - The Department will review applications submitted by local education agencies (LEA's) seeking apportionment of funds for universal prekindergarten (UPK), monitor expenditures and progress, and expand data collection for UPK grants.
- Expand Alternative Certification Programs - The Regents and the Commissioner are required to review alternative teacher preparation programs and develop programs to assist in their expansion.
- P-16 Data System / Reporting Requirements - The Regents are required to create a data system that tracks performance from PreK through attendance at higher education institutions. This will require linking multiple existing data systems within the Department as well as modifications to district level systems to include school level data.
GED Funds - SED, which is responsible for the administration of the GED Test in New York State, must increase the number of public testing centers to relieve the current backlog and to decrease the wait time for test candidates. The GED test is an international exam developed by the GED Testing Service (GEDTS) of the American Council on Education (ACE) in Washington D.C. When individuals are successful in passing the GED test, they receive a certificate or diploma that is regarded as equivalent to a high school diploma. The GED test is administrated throughout New York State through a contract between GED Testing Service of the ACE and the SED. The GED test is given in three languages, English, French and Spanish. An average of 60,000 adults (age 17 and above) take the GED test each year.
Program Area: P-16 - Higher Education
Office of School Personnel Review and Accountability – Chapter 181 of the Laws of 2000 requires fingerprinting of prospective employees of school districts, charter schools and boards of cooperative educational services (BOCES) and applicants for teacher and administrator certification. The Office of School Personnel Review and Accountability (OSPRA) meets the Department’s responsibilities under the statute by developing and maintaining databases, processing fingerprint cards and evaluating criminal records. The 2008-2009 Enacted Budget provided $600,000 of additional funding for OSPRA. This level of funding needs to be maintained so that OSPRA may continue their services to the public.
Level Funding for Special Revenue Operations
- Professions - The Office of the Professions is responsible for oversight of the 47 health, business, and design professions defined in Title VIII of the Education Law, including the licensure and registration of more than 760,000 professionals licensed and registered to practice in New York State. The Office has responsibility for investigating and prosecuting cases of professional misconduct in 44 of those 47 professions; for investigating and prosecuting allegations of illegal practice; and for administering the Professional Assistance Program, which offers the opportunity for rehabilitation of professionals impaired by alcohol or substance abuse. The Office also evaluates proposals from all New York schools seeking initial registration of or changes to educational programs for the 47 licensed professions; conducts reviews and site visits of registered programs, reviews nursing programs as an U.S. Department of Education-approved accrediting body and individually evaluates the education credentials of licensure applicants who did not complete a New York State-approved program. The Office also includes the State Boards for the Professions, which advise the Department and the Board of Regents on matters of professional licensing, practice and conduct. In addition, the Office of the Professions regularly provides the public with information to help them “shop smart” for professional services and to help them recognize and report instances of professional misconduct and unlicensed practice. Additionally, the Office issues advisories, guidelines and other communications to help professionals stay current with regulatory developments and emerging issues.
- Cultural Education – The Cultural Education account was created by an act of the Legislature in 2002, which also transferred to it all Cultural Education functions previously supported by state General Fund operations appropriations. It provides a major share of the operational funding for the State Library, State Museum, State Archives and the Public Broadcasting Program. These institutions are responsible for increasing the knowledge and information resources of State and local government, businesses, and individuals. The Office supports research, operates programs, and develops collections that serve the long-term interests of the institutions and residents of New York.
- Proprietary School Supervision (BPSS) - BPSS licenses, monitors, and regulates private trade, business, and computer training facilities throughout the State. Their mission is to ensure consumer protection; to promote increasing educational competence, high standards, accountability, and integrity within the proprietary school sector; and to implement monitoring and oversight with fairness and equity. BPSS receives revenue from school licensing fees and tuition assessments. BPSS licenses and monitors over 450 business, trade, and computer training facilities.
- Teacher Certification - The Teacher Certification Office reviews applications for teaching credentials that authorize an individual to teach in New York’s public schools and issues such authorizations to those who qualify in a timely manner.
- Operations and Management Services - The Office of Operations and Management Services provides executive direction, leadership and administrative support for all major program offices to assist them in realizing the six Regents goals established in the Department’s strategic plan. Basic functions include human resources management, labor relations, staff development, fiscal services, budgeting, information technology, business services, facilities management, auditing, public information, intergovernmental relations and legal services.
III. Maintain Aid to Localities Programs Administered by SED
Program Area: P-16 - EMSC
- Academic Intervention for Non-Public Schools - Academic intervention services (AIS) for children attending nonpublic schools supplement the instruction provided in the general curriculum and assist students in meeting the State learning standards. AIS are intended to assist students who are at risk of not achieving the State learning standards in English language arts, mathematics, social studies and/or science, or who are at risk of not gaining the knowledge and skills needed to meet or exceed designated performance levels on State assessments.
- Adult Literacy Education (ALE) - The State ALE Program provides funding for adult education programs for undereducated and disadvantaged adults. Eligible agencies include not-for-profit agencies (e.g., community-based organizations, postsecondary institutions, and literacy volunteer agencies). ALE provides funding to not-for-profit organizations to operate adult literacy education programs including adult basic education, English for speakers of other languages, and high school equivalency programs.
- Basic Education for Public Assistance Recipients (WEP) - The State Literacy and Basic Education for Public Assistance Recipients Program, referred to as WEP provides funding for adult education programs for individuals receiving public assistance. Eligible agencies include school districts and boards of cooperative educational services (BOCES).
- Bilingual Education – Supports initiatives to address the needs of LEP/ELL students consistent with the Regent’s policy paper on bilingual education and Commissioner’s Regulations Part 154. The initiatives focus on high-need school districts. The activities are in the areas of higher standards and new assessments for LEP/ELLs, preparation of certified bilingual and ESL teachers, increasing the knowledge of parents, and providing equitable services for LEP/ELLs.
- Center for School Safety - The New York State Center for School
Safety is funded for the primary purpose to help make schools
safe. The fundamental principles of this mission are as
- Provide training and technical assistance to schools, under the direction of the State Education Department, on implementing the Safe Schools Against Violence in Education (SAVE) legislation.
- Support the development process for a school violence index as a measure of the level of school violence.
- Develop process for Violent and Disruptive Incidence Reporting (VADIR) program reviews with selected districts.
- Charter School Development – Provides over $2 million for the administration of the SUNY Charter School Institute.
- Education of Native Americans – Provides for educational services through contracts with 13 public schools for approximately 3,000 Native American students in grades K through 12 that live on nine Indian reservations. These funds also pay for the transportation of these students.
- Extended School Day/School Violence Prevention – Provides funds for extended day programs in over 140 high-need school districts. The programs provide needed after-school programming, promote school safety, support at-risk students, engage parents and members of the community, and respond effectively to emergency situations.
- Health Education Programs - Funds will support the Statewide School Health Services Center and the Statewide Center for Student Support Services. These funds are available for health-related programs including, but not limited to, those providing instruction and supportive services in comprehensive health education and/or acquired immune deficiency syndrome education and a school-based health clinic.
- Learning Technology Grants (LTGs) - The LTGs Program provides funds to improve student academic performance in relation to the State learning standards through the integration of educational technology in classroom activities. LTGs provide funds for acquisition of both technology and staff development that will facilitate student learning. As the effectiveness of educational technology depends upon adequate training in its use, expenditures for staff development must amount to at least 45 percent of the program budget and no more than 45 percent of the budget may be spent on hardware.
- Math and Science Partnerships Program - The Mathematics and Science Partnerships Program is intended to increase the academic achievement of students in mathematics and science by enhancing the content knowledge and teaching skills of classroom teachers. Partnerships between high-need school districts and the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) faculty in institutions of higher education are at the core of these improvement efforts.
- Nonpublic Mandated Services Aid – Chapter 507 of the Laws of 1974 requires that nonpublic schools be reimbursed for the actual costs they incur in providing required services to the Sate. These services include the administration of State testing and evaluation programs and participating in State programs for reporting basic educational data.
- Primary Mental Health - The Children’s Institute has
developed and provided prevention-oriented programs based on
sound research to children since 1957. Several structured prevention
and early intervention programs are provided to students, including:
- Primary Project - A program developed for the early detection and prevention of school adjustment and learning problems in primary grade children.
- Resiliency Program - A program that uses the results of research in factors affecting resiliency to address the needs of children placed at risk by their environment.
- Pre-K Preliminary Project - An extension of Primary Project that has been adopted for four-year-old children.
- School Bus Driver Safety Training - The School Bus Driver Safety Training Program is a comprehensive education program for school bus drivers, monitors, attendants, and school bus driver instructors in the latest techniques and information concerning safe pupil transportation. For the 2008-2009 school year, SED intends to update the Basic and Advanced Courses of Instruction for School Bus Drivers, to update the School Bus Driver Instructor Certification Curriculum, to write a Handbook for School Bus Drivers, and to develop a Sensitivity Training Curriculum for School Bus Drivers, Monitors and Attendants for transporting students with disabilities.
- School Health Services – Provides grants to any city school district in a city having a population of in excess of 125,000 and less than 1,000,000 for school health services such as medical examinations, dental inspections, vision screening, verification of immunizations and infectious disease reporting.
- School Lunch and Breakfast Program – Federal and State reimbursement is provided monthly for meals served to children that meet federal meal pattern requirements. The amount of reimbursement for each meal is based on the family's eligibility for free, reduced price or full paid meals, which is determined by an annually approved application, direct certification letter or computer match with the local Department of Social Services. Public school districts, nonprofit, nonpublic schools and residential childcare institutions are eligible to participate in these Programs.
- Schools Under Registration Review (SURR) – State grant funds are available for school districts with SURR to enable oversight of the restructuring and redesign process in schools that are farthest from State standards and most in need of improvement.
- Summer Food Program - New York State provides additional per meal reimbursement each spring to Summer Food Program sponsors. The reimbursement is for breakfasts, lunches, suppers and/or snacks for each meal that meets meal pattern requirements. In addition, camps and migrant sites receive only this State reimbursement for “fourth meal supplements” which are not eligible for federal reimbursement.
- Post-secondary Education Aid for Native Americans - Education Law, §4118, provides funding for Native American students for attendance at approved, accredited institutions within New York State. Eligible students must submit proof of tribal enrollment, be a State resident, a high school graduate or GED recipient, and be accepted to an accredited New York State institution. Approximately 300-400 students each semester are awarded this grant. All eligible students meeting application requirements and filing deadlines will be funded.
- Teacher Centers -- Teacher Centers were established in 1984 with a State appropriation to provide systematic, ongoing professional education services to the State’s teachers. The current appropriation funds 133 centers that serve more than 308,000 teachers per year throughout the State.
- Planning Grants for Implementation or Expansion of UPK or Conversion to Full day Kindergarten -- These funds are for eligible public school districts to plan to implement or expand Universal Prekindergarten (UPK) programs or to plan to convert to full-day kindergarten classes (Education Laws 2007, §38 of Section 3641, Subdivisions 2 and 8 and Education Laws 2008, §32 of Section 6807). Public school districts are eligible to apply for this funding on a one-time only basis.
- Workplace Literacy - The Workplace Literacy Program is designed to encourage the establishment of basic skills and job-related literacy education programs for both members of unions and employees in the public and private sector. It provides funding to labor organizations, their federations, or to organizations of employers acting in consortium with labor organizations. Though federal funding for this Program ended October 31, 1997, State funding continues to help counter the trend of New York State job loss to other states and nations by giving New York State employees the skills to achieve greater productivity.
Program Area: P-16 – Higher Education
- Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP) - The HEOP operates at 62 independent colleges and universities in New York State, working specifically with individuals from families with low incomes, with high potential for successful collegiate experience but who have not acquired the verbal, mathematical and other cognitive skills required for collegiate level work. Continued reduction in funding will mean that the number of students entering post-secondary education through HEOP will continue to drop. Reduced services at the campus level may lead to lower retention rates, especially of incoming freshman students. The independent institutions that sponsor HEOP are currently contributing approximately four dollars to every dollar from the state, and the lack of state funding has caused some institutions to drop out of the program.
- Science and Technology Entry Program (STEP) - The STEP serves secondary school students all over New York State in order to increase the number of historically underrepresented and disadvantaged students prepared to enter college, and improve their participation rate in mathematics, science , technology, health-related fields and the licensed professions. This Program has a long history of success in moving students from at risk for dropout into successful secondary school graduates who perform better than their peers in Regents mathematics and science courses. If funding is not restored to the pre-reduction level of 19 million dollars, the result will be a reduced number of participating students, a lower number of graduates and less services available.
- Collegiate Science and Technology Entry Program (CSTEP) - As the collegiate companion to STEP, the CSTEP seeks to increase the number of students from underrepresented groups who are pursuing professional licensure and careers in mathematics, science, technology and health-related fields within the college ranks. It has been shown that CSTEP seniors graduate and pursue graduate programs and licensure at a higher rate than their peers.
- Liberty Partnerships Program (LPP) - Established to address the significant dropout rate among New York’s youth, the LPP offers comprehensive pre-collegiate/dropout prevention programs and services to youth in urban, rural and suburban communities of Western New York, Finger Lakes, Central New York, the Southern Tier, North Country, Mohawk Valley, Capital District, Mid-Hudson Valley, NYC and Long Island. Reductions in these programs relate directly to increases in students disengagement and drop-out. Continued reductions in funding will mean that the program’s all-time high support of 14,000 at-risk students, which has dwindled to just over 12,000, will continue to decrease.
- Teacher Opportunity Corps (TOC) - The TOC serves full-time undergraduate and graduate students, or part-time graduate students completing the requirements for provisional/initial or permanent/professional certification. Priority goes to individuals identified as underrepresented and underserved in the teaching profession and to economically disadvantaged individuals. Reduced funding for TOC projects over the last several years has reduced the number and effectiveness of the programs statewide at a time of critical need for new teachers from underrepresented groups, especially skilled in working with at-risk students and in urban settings. Any additional reduction in funding may mean an end to TOC at all of the institutions it is currently operating at.
Program Area: VESID
- Early Childhood Direction Centers (ECDCs) - The ECDCs are a technical assistance network that provides information necessary to serve parents and their young children with disabilities. The ECDCs have developed and conducted trainings on an annual basis for over 3,000 parents on the laws and regulations on special education programs and services for young children with disabilities. Although this program is funded with both federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) funds and State funds, the State funding level must be maintained so that services related to children too young for IDEA services may be continued. If the State level is not maintained, the level of services related to the younger children must be reduced.
- Independent Living Centers (ILCs) - The total reduction in
SFY 2008-2009 of $960,000 from the SFY 2007-2008 appropriation
is already impacting the Independent Living program. This
reduction will result in the following:
- Approximately 25 staff positions have been eliminated statewide at the ILCs, forcing experienced peer role models with disabilities to seek alternate employment opportunities, and thereby denying services to up to 3,000 fewer people.
- Increased numbers of individuals with disabilities without access to independent living services are more likely to seek living and employment options in more costly segregated settings.
- Access to benefits assistance, utilization of work incentives and access to basic subsistence programs will be further reduced for individuals with most significant disabilities.
- Vocational Rehabilitation
- Case Services - The total reduction in SFY 2008-2009
of $2,746,583 from the SFY 2007-2008 appropriation is already
impacting the Vocational Rehabilitation program. This
reduction will result in the following:
- An inability to meet Maintenance of Effort (MOE) requirements. As per the federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973, there is a dollar for dollar federal penalty for failure to maintain State effort. As a result, the State’s allocation of Section 110 federal dollars will be reduced by the amount of our 2007-2008 Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) MOE gap. This amount is in addition to the amount lost due to the cut in State Supported Employment funds and the impact of any continuing or additional reduction for the 2009-2010 SFY on our 2008-2009 FFY MOE.
- Supported Employment - The total reduction in SFY 2008-2009
of $1,224,715 from the SFY 2007-2008 appropriation is already
impacting the Vocational Rehabilitation program. This
reduction will result in the following:
- An inability to meet Maintenance of Effort (MOE) requirements. As a result of the cut to State Supported Employment dollars, the State’s allocation will be reduced by the amount of our 2007-2008 Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) MOE gap. This amount is in addition to the amount lost as a result of the cut to State Case Service funds and the impact of any continuing or additional reduction for the 2009-2010 SFY on our 2008-2009 FFY MOE.
- Case Services - The total reduction in SFY 2008-2009 of $2,746,583 from the SFY 2007-2008 appropriation is already impacting the Vocational Rehabilitation program. This reduction will result in the following:
In addition, the potential impact of a further reduction in the State appropriation for either of these programs includes:
*Source: Council of State Administrators of Vocational Rehabilitation, Investing in America Fiscal Year 2007 Report
- A further decline in the already low employment rate for individuals with disabilities (33.5 percent*) and an increase in the already high poverty rate (28.6 percent) of individuals with disabilities in New York State;
- Jeopardizing the staffing of the community rehabilitation programs which employ more than 30,000 individuals;
- Increased dependence on public assistance;
- Decreasing tax revenues generated by workers with disabilities;
- Consumers with disabilities without access to supported employment are more likely to seek employment options in more costly segregated settings or face unemployment; and
- Future risk of New York’s adoption of an Order of Selection if VESID cannot serve all eligible individuals who apply for services due to fiscal constraints and/or insufficient staff.
Program Area: Cultural Education
- Aid to Libraries and Library Systems - Education Law provides
statutory aid to support the ongoing operational costs of New
York State’s statewide network of 73 library systems and
7,000 local libraries. This critical education infrastructure
promotes local efficiency through a state-supported knowledge
network. The library systems connect thousands of libraries with
cost-effective cooperative programs, shared services and purchasing.
Each State dollar invested in cooperative library system programs
provides $13 of services for New Yorkers at their local library.
New York’s libraries are struggling to meet these increased public service demands in the face of rising operational costs. Library systems are key to assisting local libraries to achieve further cost savings through cooperative programs and shared services, particularly shared computer and internet access services.
- Aid to Public Broadcasting - New York State’s public television stations provide free access to on-line educational video, aligned to New York State’s learning standards, to all students, teachers and educational administrators in the State. In the station fiscal year ending June 30, 2008, the number of teachers using the service rose by 23 percent over 2006-2007. Currently, 167,302 New York teachers are registered users of the available digital resources.
New York State’s public television stations provide free access to Adult Education and English as a Second Language video. New York’s public television stations provide free arts, news and cultural affairs programs to all citizens of the State.
As community-based, 501(C) (3) charitable institutions, New York’s public broadcasters are facing significant decreases in individual giving and institutional giving, their traditional sources of funding. State Aid enables the stations to maintain their education services and serves as a leveraging factor in local fund-raising.
- Documentary Heritage Program (DHP) - The DHP is a statewide program established by law in 1988 to ensure the identification, sound administration, and accessibility of New York's historical records. The DHP provides grants to not-for-profit organizations in New York State that collect, hold and make available historical records. Funding is available for strategic planning projects, arrangement and description of historical records, and surveying of records of under-documented populations and/or activities.
- Local Government Records Management Improvement (LGRMIF) - The LGRMIF supports grants and services to help local governments better manage the records they create and maintain. This program has brought huge improvements to records management in New York State: modern records centers for the orderly storage of records, preservation projects that have ensured that permanent records will be available for future generations, disaster recovery grants that have salvaged and repaired vital records, and electronic records projects that have modernized recordkeeping in our state's local governments. The LGRMIF is funded by fees collected by local governments to support local government records projects. Over the life of the program, 8,856 grants have been awarded totaling $176,898,735.
The LGRMIF, a self-supported fund, is the single most cost-effective way to ensure that local government records remain protected and available to the public. Reductions seriously impact the grantees' ability to improve how local governments manage their records, prepare for records disasters, and provide public access to their records.