Tomika Anglin testimony transcript from the meeting of the School Reform Commission on March 23, 2017.

tomika anglin 3-23-17
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First I want to thank the teacher contingent that came to testify. Thank you for being very personal and open with the issues you are facing based on not having a contract.

There was a question about maneuverability in the budget where there is money to be spent. But it seems like money appears from anywhere when there somebody wants a contract. The SRC, based on my own limited knowledge, is an agent of the state. The state said Relay can’t come here and be a school. So the SRC, agent of the state, says, “Come on in. We’re going to pay you to teach our teachers and your just going to get your Masters degree from New York.That’s not a problem.” That is a problem! Every time you spend money that you don’t have on a program that you don’t need then the maneuverability in the budget gets a little tighter. $160,000 for advertising, $150,000 for a school that’s not supposed to be a school in Pennsylvania. I don’t understand! I’m sure it is based on our limited knowledge, but I really don’t understand!

Mrl. Monson stated that the budget is based on actual numbers. Going to the City with a wish list is not a budget. The accountants work in very specific ways. They look at numbers. “This is what we have. This is what we got. This is what we’re going to get.”  Seems real simple. You can’t stand in front of the City and say this is what we need unless you create a budget that has that. And then, you can’t expect them to act on invisible numbers. If you need more money then budget that money in. But every time someone seems to give you money, you find a new contract. You find a new person, some uncle, some nephew who needs a job. Their company needs some new money. So if we stop giving away money then maybe the City or the state would be more inclined to give you the money that you need, that our students need to get the education that they need.

I’ve heard stories about curriculum materials being brought into schools for 120 students when there are only 60 students available for those things. So they have surpluses of this brand spanking new curriculum that #1, isn’t always being used; and #2, is way more than what is necessary.