BY YVETTE BROWN
The Lexington School for the Deaf along with the 10 other private, state supported 4201 schools received a funding increase, which was approved by the State Legislature.
In the budget that was signed into law by Gov. Andrew Cuomo earlier this month, the 4201 schools – private, state supported schools serving children who are blind , deaf and severely physically disabled – received around $4.6 million in additional funding for the 2016-17 fiscal year. Last year, the schools received an increase of $2.3 million.
“In January, representatives of the Association presented testimony to legislative leaders outlining our request for additional funding. In March, students, staff and family members traveled to Albany to speak directly to nearly 100 legislators from across the state outlining our request for funding parity consistent with state policy,” said Donald Galloway CEO and Superintendent of the Lexington School, Donald Galloway in a letter to the Queens Tribune.
As previously reported by the Queens Tribune, the school took their advocacy to restore funds to social media by sending out Twitter messages to the state legislature and state Democratic and Republican parties asking them for a 4.2 increase in their funding. The request was heard and made, said Cindy Casson, the Development Director for the Lexington School.
Because of the increase, the school was also able to give the teachers an increase in their wages.
Casson said that while they are not sure what the rest of the extra funding will go to, last year’s funding went to a few programs that help motivate and teach the students in unique ways.
The Lexington School for the Deaf is located on 30th Avenue in Jackson Heights and has been in the neighborhood serving deaf students throughout the five boroughs since 1865. Lexington is the largest school for deaf students in New York State and they educate deaf children up until the age of 21. The school prepares students to continue on to college, vocational education, job training or a placement that will help them live a responsible and productive life.
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