Preschool special education ending in Monroe County because state froze payments

Posted at: 02/07/2014 1:00 PM
Updated at: 02/07/2014 5:42 PM
By: Berkeley Brean

News10NBC has a story that shows when New York State stop spending money, good programs that help children can go away.

BOCES in Spencerport runs a preschool special education program, but because the state froze increases to this kind of school aid, the program is in jeopardy.

The children in the class have serious special needs. Every year, the cost per student has gone up, sometimes because of state mandates. But every year since the recession, the state has reimbursed BOCES the same amount of money. After five years, the numbers just don't add up.

Samantha Montgomery has a daughter in the class. She has a son with autism who didn’t speak when he came here.

Samantha Montgomery said, “I have seen so much growth and success that he has gone from a special education setting to a mainstream first grade classroom. “

Jo Anne Antonacci said, “The consequences are if districts or providers begin to run in a deficit they're not going to be able to maintain the program.”

Jo Anne Antonacci is on a committee that just recommended rate increases to the New York State Education Department. If that doesn't happen, the program goes away in June.

There is a petition on this issue. To sign the petition, click here