This article was originally published in The Notebook. In August 2020, The Notebook became Chalkbeat Philadelphia.
Pennsylvania school board members came to the Capitol on Monday, some of them downright weary.
"It’s been a grueling year," said Nathan Mains, executive director of the Pennsylvania School Boards Association. The association was in town for its annual legislative lobbying day. Its members wanted to underscore the damage caused by the budget stalemate.
Taken together, they said, school districts have had to borrow more than a billion dollars to keep their doors open during the more than eight-month impasse. As schools pay that back, they’ll also be on the hook for thousands of dollars in interest payments and legal fees. Meanwhile, 35 of the 500 school districts in the commonwealth have seen their credit ratings take a hit.
Stacey Thompson, treasurer of the Board of Education in Keystone School District, Clarion County, touched on all of that.
"These are sacrifices," Thompson said, "that the school districts, students, parents, community, and personnel had to endure due to our legislature and governor not working together."