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SRB: On school funding, Baltimore has set the example

Mayor says city has closed deficits without denying money for schools so why can't Hogan?

The recent letter to the editor ("Mayor neglects school funding, too," Jan. 30) stating that Baltimore has not led by example through our investments in education, isn't supported by any measure of fact. Education funding has increased in Baltimore City while both our short-term and long-term deficits have decreased.

Baltimore has good reason to be concerned about Gov. Larry Hogan's proposed cuts to education, and we are an example of how you can close budget deficits while investing in education.

Much like Governor Hogan, I also entered office faced with a historic budget deficit and high taxes. When you face a deficit of that magnitude, you have to be very clear what your priorities are, and in Baltimore education has been at the top of the list.

I made it a priority to make tough decisions so that we could build the school system that our children deserve.

It was that type of thinking that led to a 20 percent increase in city support for schools during a nationwide recession. It was that type of thinking that expanded education grants in support of community schools and Out of School Time programs. And it was that type of thinking that secured a historic billion-dollar investment for new school construction and renovation — Baltimore's first new schools in a generation.

You cannot cut your way to prosperity. Investments in education have to be a priority, and we will do everything in our power to make sure Baltimore's children aren't forgotten.

Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, Baltimore

The writer is mayor of Baltimore.

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