Can-Kicker Jack Letter Is NOT A Guarantee Of Funding

On June 29th, Delaware Governor Jack Markell wrote a letter to State Representatives Charles Potter and Stephanie Bolden and State Senator Margaret-Rose Henry.  In the letter he expressed his regret at not being able to “fully support” the funding for the Wilmington Education Improvement Commission’s redistricting plan and how he expects to appropriate $7.5 million in his recommended FY2018 budget in January, 2017.  Later in the letter he states he will appropriate the funding in his recommended budget.  Back in September of 2014, Markell issued an Executive Order which created the Wilmington Education Advisory Committee which issued recommendations that became WEIC.  By doing so, through Executive Order, that should have been his FULL support.  Instead, he kicked the can down the road because he wasn’t able to give this his “full support”.

I’ve always wondered what the deal was with this.  It happened as Christina and Red Clay were calling for the DOE’s throat over the priority schools.  Constituents were pissed and the above-mentioned legislators, along with others, pleaded with Governor Markell to do something.  I firmly believe the entire WEIC redistricting plan was the official reaction to the priority schools.  But did Jack bite off more than he could chew with this?  By essentially creating all of this, it brought city advocates for under-served, under-funded, and high-needs city children to the forefront of Delaware education conversation.  It quickly became clear that much more was needed than the state would be able to deliver.  In hindsight though, it did force us as a state to renew conversations about race, education, funding, economic class, discrimination, and so much more.  Before the budget vote, State Rep. Stephanie Bolden explained how we are all neighbors in Delaware and what happens in Wilmington has a trickle-down effect to the rest of the state.  The opposite could be said though.  What doesn’t happen downstate affects the entire state.  It is my hope that as WEIC uses their extra year of planning that they add Kent and Sussex County voices to these essential conversations.

I don’t trust Markell to keep his word.  By the time he submits this budget, his time as Governor is done.  He will be sailing off to his next destination (for which I will be happy unless it lands him at the US DOE).  But even if he does, that is no guarantee that 1) the money will be there in a year, 2) the Joint Finance Committee will appropriate it, or 3) The General Assembly will approve it in the budget bill for FY2018.  This is not, by far, a done deal.

markell7.5millionpromise

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3 thoughts on “Can-Kicker Jack Letter Is NOT A Guarantee Of Funding

  1. I believe Markell’s true intent was to kick CSD in the butt for standing up to his Priority School Plan. Nothing more, Nothing less.
    He has proven time and again that his agenda has nothing to do with the people- especially children- and everything to do with him; his power, his resume, his personal goals.

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  2. 4equity
    Absolutely correct and if these same people are on the budget committees and consider anything this Governor proposes as a serious policy than they should be removed from that committee.
    John Kowalko

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  3. From inside sources it appears that the priority plan was just a part of the master plan to corporatize Wilmington’s district. The huge Bank of America building had gone unfilled for too long..

    Sometimes when you squeeze a balloon too hard, a bubble pops out somewhere. That was the WEIC, and it was too politically connected to squish and keep the balloon intact. So they played along and the Christina District, took advantage of that window given, and lateraled its section of Wilmington over to Red Clay.

    Keep this in the foremost part of your mind… WEIC does nothing for the Bank of America building or the Longwood Foundation….

    So,this half of the session its been killed with little bits of poison scattered here and there… We all know by whom, so mentioning them one more time, is redundant. But the water carriers consistent for the administration, were all had their names attached to the particles of poison…

    So despite all, it is still a victory for students so far, because the Bank of America building is not full… Financiers have lost, and on this deal to them, Markell was not able to deliver…

    Our children are still left with an avenue, but one probably missing $7.5 million dollars….

    In the end, to fix Wilmington? The state either needs to take over the BOA school building complex and hand it to Red Clay, who will then kick out all the privateers, or as a less viable option, let Red Clay rent space from the Longwood Foundation to publicly teach Wilmington’s students who, if they wanted, could then walk to school…

    I’m thinking. that direction is the general tack that all of us should go…

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