Last year, Pennsylvania’s Republican Governor, Tom Corbett, drew ire and protest when he proposed and succeeded in passing deep cuts to education, especially to the state university system. Now, Gov. Corbett is proposing more cuts to education, this time about $20 million to the State System of Higher Education. A history professor at East Stroudsburg University had an editorial published yesterday in the The Morning Call newspaper, which covers the Lehigh Valley, about what impact these budget cuts have at state universities. Read it here.
The writer and professor, Shannon Frystack, points out that cuts to education lead to higher class sizes, cuts to courses that are planned to run, and dissatisfaction among students. She writes, “The most recent cuts have forced my university, as well as others in the state system, to increase class sizes and cut courses that did not meet, what I believe to be, unreasonable minimum numbers of students.” She goes on to say, “Many students have expressed to me that they are feeling ‘lost in the shuffle’ and that they were told that if they came to ESU, they would have smaller classes and more interaction with their professors. I’m doing the best that I can, but there is only so much I can do when I am forced to work with 150-200 students per semester.”
She also points out that the budget cuts have forced ESU and other universities to leave vacant open faculty positions.
Maybe Corbett, like a lot of other Republicans, wants to fully privatize education, doing away with the state system that makes higher education obtainable for a lot more students. I myself am a product of the state university system because I went to West Chester University for my undergrad education and had a wonderful experience and great professors. If you are concerned with this issue, let the governor know how you feel. You can contact him online by clicking here.