A breakdown of the new Pennsylvania budget shows that York County schools should get an increase in state funding if Governor Corbett signs it.

But the amounts are lower than what Corbett proposed earlier this year, which means some York districts will need to adjust their own budgets to account for less money.

In some cases, the drop is more than $100,000.

School districts in York and across the state will not see any increase to their share of the $5.5 billion set aside for basic education funding, as that amount stayed level from last year.

New grant money: But schools are projected to see an increase in grant money available for each district with a $100 million increase in the Ready to Learn block grants.

That money will be distributed among the 501 school districts in the state, with districts in York County seeing an increase between $80,000 and $528,000 in grant money for certain education initiatives.

The money is allocated based on factors such as student enrollment and poverty levels, according to the state Department of Education.

Next year, the York City school district is slated to receive the most possible grant money, with $1,278,994 to use for programming, according to figures from the state Senate Appropriations Committee.

York Suburban will have the least available grant funding possible, with an estimated $127,679 available to use.


Those indicate increases of $528,158 for York City and $81,484 for York Suburban. Among York County school districts, only the Hanover Public school district received a smaller increase, $80,196.

How it works: Because it is a grant, school districts will need to receive permission from the department to use the funds for specific purposes.

Those can fall into three categories, according to the department, and include programs that will help with early learning, emphasize teaching in science and mathematics or initiatives that help customize learning for students.

One of the largest questions school officials are waiting to hear about is whether the money can be used for existing programs or if the funds have to go toward new learning efforts, said Red Lion business manager Terry Robinson.

According to information passed from the state to the Pennsylvania School Boards Association, schools will be able to use the funding for existing programs, said Steve Robinson, spokesman for the association.

Districts can also use the money toward programs created under the Accountability Block Grant from last year, which was merged with the new grant program this year.

Funding: The Spring Grove Area district will receive about $280,000 less than what it expected to receive, said business manager George Ioannidis.

That deficit will have to be made up through the district's general fund, Ioannidis said, with an even sharper focus on saving money throughout the school year to make up for that.

Red Lion is estimated to receive $180,676 less than what was proposed by Corbett in February.

Robinson said if the grant can go toward existing programs, it will be used to offset funds spent from the district's general fund this year. But that grant money isn't even included yet in the district budget, he said.

"We did not budget that money as revenue because it was nebulous and we weren't sure what the strings were going to be," Robinson said.

The Senate Appropriations Committee also estimated increases in special education funding. Those increases vary from $15,102 in the York Suburban district to $173,697 in the York City school district.

Red Lion, for example, will receive $2,832,482, which represents an increase of $76,937. It's not much, Robinson said, but any boost in funding will be put to use.

"That represents about 1 percent of our budget," Robinson said. "But I'm not going to look a gift horse in the face."

There is also an increase of $150 million for school districts across the state to help with pension contributions, but breakdowns by school district are not yet available.

— Reach Nikelle Snader at nsnader@yorkdispatch.com.