This article was originally published in The Notebook. In August 2020, The Notebook became Chalkbeat Philadelphia.
by Holly Otterbein for NewsWorks
The start of classes for Philadelphia’s 134,000 public school kids is not at all slowing down student and teacher activists who are furious about this year’s budget cutbacks.
Every Friday, the Philadelphia Coalition Advocating for Public Schools is setting up camp at a school to demand more funding from City Hall and the state government.
The group rallied today at the Feltonville School of Arts and Sciences, waving down cars and passing out fliers urging residents to file a formal complaint with the state’s education department over the cutbacks.
Eighth-grader Francheska Torres said she got involved because she misses having a full-time guidance counselor.
"Now that we don’t have that, I can’t control my anger issues," she said. "It’s just harder for me. I get emotional."
Brianna Escalante, who is also in the 8th grade, worries that the cuts will hurt her chances of enrolling next year at the prestigious magnet Julia R. Masterman Laboratory and Demonstration School.