Good news! It seems as though lawmakers in Trenton have added a budget resolution to delay implementation of the new fiscal code directly impacting special education private schools until July 2018.
Please show your support once again and contact Gov. Christie TODAY to support this resolution. He has the power to veto this and we can't let that happen. A phone call, tweet, or email showing your support for the delay is critical. He has until JUNE 30 to sign it so we need your support today! The information on contacting Gov. Christie is below.
Thank you once again for your support of Celebrate the Children!
CONTACT THE GOVERNOR TODAY TO EXPRESS SUPPORT FOR BUDGET RESOLUTION 1163
WHEN: NOW!! Not later than Friday, June 30
1) call: 609-292-6000
2) E-mail: use this form: http://www.nj.gov/governor/contact/
STEP 1 – TOPIC: Education
STEP 2- SubTopic – Special Education
SUBJECT LINE: Support Budget Resolution 1163
3) Tweet: @govchristie #support1163 #specialeducation Support budget res 1163 to delay fiscal code for private special education schools.
WHAT TO WRITE/SAY: (you can copy and paste this message)
Dear Governor Christie:
I am the parent of a child with severe disabilities who is placed by my school district at a state approved private special education school.
I am writing to you to urge you to support Budget Resolution 1163, which delays for one year the implementation of new fiscal code designed to reduce funding for more than 150 state-approved private special education schools.This month, the State Board of Education adopted 82 pages of complex fiscal code for special education schools that serve roughly 10,000 children with disabilities so severe and complex that public schools cannot provide an appropriate education to them. The implementation date of this code is slated for July 1. This gave schools just 17 business days to review the new rules and make necessary changes to come into compliance.
Governor, my child’s school needs more time for a careful transition.
I urge you to support budget resolution 1163 calling for a one-year delay in the implementation of the fiscal code affecting state approved private special education schools for students with disabilities.
Dear Senator Pennacchio,
I am your constituent living in Montville, NJ.
My developmentally disabled daughter, Rose, is only 17 years-old and therefore unable to vote, but she too is your constituent. It is the highest calling of your responsibility as an elected official to take care of our society’s most vulnerable, and this includes developmentally children.
Sadly, while Montville Township can rightfully boast of the quality of the education provided by its school system – it cannot provide for the extraordinary needs of my daughter. I look to the positive and recognize what a great leap it is for our society, and humanity as a whole, that we now see the potential waiting to be unlocked in children like my beloved daughter. Our efforts to educate them elevate all of us as a society.
I’m grateful to live in a community like Montville where education is so highly valued. Montville Township pays for my daughter to attend an exemplary school for children with neuro-cognitive disorders, Celebrate the Children in nearby Denville, NJ.
At this time I must reach out to ask you to help my daughter, and all the vulnerable children in her private special education school. The children, and we their families, are alarmed that the new fiscal codes implemented for private special education schools will effectively force them to close their doors forever. These codes, (N.J.A.C. 6A:23A-18) will negatively affect the quality of the services my child must have in order to learn and become a productive citizen in the longterm. As a community we can’t lose sight of this imperative longterm goal of education.
Further, these code were adopted just this June 8 – with the demand that the schools see they are implemented by July 1st. This is patently unfair. Just 17 days, in one of the busiest school months of the year, to implement more than 80 pages of changes - is simply impossible.
Dozens of organizations opposed these new codes. Scores of parents drove to Trenton to testify; more than 800 individuals wrote to the Board to express their concern, and more than 2,000 signed a petition for the implementation of the rules to be postponed. Given that we are all not just parents, but caregivers as well, this an extraordinary amount of time and effort.
As your constituent, and the voice of my daughter Rose – I implore you Senator Pennacchio to demand more time to see these codes implemented.
I join thousands of other advocates across New Jersey in asking you and all your colleagues for more time. Please support the budget resolution calling for a delay in implementation. This will give schools time to make necessary changes, and prevent avoidable disruptions. Please understand, “disruptions” for children like my daughter Rosie are major issues for them and therefore, us, the families.
In advance, I send my profound thanks,
Jeannie M McGuire
Montville, NJ 07045
Printed with permission. Please feel free to share or copy, paste, and personalize for your Senator.
Contributions to this blog are made by Celebrate the Children's highly talented, interdisciplinary team and wonderful families.