Penn Wood High Student Contributes to Discussion Seeking More Equal School Funding Across the State

David Bjorkgren
Image via Monica Herndon, The Philadelphia Inquirer.
Nasharie Stewart (center), Penn Wood High School, spoke at a news conference Monday hosted by State. Sen. Vince Hughes on school funding inequities.

A Penn Wood High School student highlighted the differences between William Penn School District and other districts to show the inequity in education in Pennsylvania, writes Kristen A. Graham for The Philadelphia Inquirer.

She was part of a recent news conference of educators, students and politicians at an King High School in Germantown. The group was demanding better education for Pennsylvania’s students.

Penn Wood student Nasharie Stewart said she has learned in overcrowded classrooms, from old textbooks with pages missing.

She remembered sitting in class one day when a water pipe burst over her head.

Stewart was shocked when visiting a wealthier district, seeing students learning in brand new buildings, with small classes and adequate materials.

 “You could feel the difference, and you can’t help but ask, ‘Why not us?’” Stewart asked.

Those at the conference were asking the state legislature to provide $1.3 billion in new education funding in schools throughout Pennsylvania.

Per-pupil funding in Philadelphia is about $15,000, said State Sen. Vincent Hughes, the event’s organizer. In Radnor, it’s about $24,000.

“Education in Pennsylvania is funded separately and unequally,” Hughes said. “There are two separate school systems in Pennsylvania.”

Read more at The Philadelphia Inquirer about education inequities in Pennsylvania.