Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter hit the airwaves Wednesday night, asking the public to come together and make the tough choices to fund the public schools.
Mayor Nutter laid out the problems.
"The Philadelphia School District faces a $629 million budget gap because of reductions in state and federal funding along with rapidly increasing operating costs,” said the mayor.
"To balance its budget, the School Reform Commission adopted a new budget roughly $400 million smaller than the current one."
That includes layoffs and elimination of full-day kindergarten and transportation services.
"The School District has asked both the City and the State to help by filling a portion of its current budget gap so that some important programs can be restored,” said Mayor Nutter.
The mayor has proposed a tax on sugared drinks and increased property taxes to come up with the funding. Neither idea is popular.
City council will hold a hearing on funding for public schools Thursday morning. The mayor is asking concerned citizens to show up and be heard.
You can find the mayor’s entire statement at Philly.com.