Education Cuts Have Real Consequences: Sukhi Singh, City Council Candidate for NYC District 29, Sounds the Alarm
New York City is planning another round of budget cuts, and the education department is on that list once again. A newly proposed 3% cut to the city’s share of the education department’s budget for the next year would remove another $420 million from already overstretched funds.
As school districts across the country face new budget cuts, local Queen-based small business owner and passionate educational advocate Sukhi Singh has sounded the alarm on the inevitable consequences that will follow if the cuts make it across the table. According to Singh, “We are facing an unprecedented crisis in our nation’s education system, and drastic budget cuts will only make it worse.”
This candidate for City Council District 29 emphasizes that budget reductions can lead to larger class sizes, fewer teachers and support staff, and less access to extracurricular activities and enrichment programs. These can all have an adverse effect on student learning and development, leading to increased numbers of troubled children in schools.
In addition to these issues, Singh also highlights the importance of providing students with access to high-quality learning materials: “It’s not enough to just provide students with textbooks — they need interactive tools that can help them learn better and faster. But sadly, many districts don’t have the money to invest in these tools due to budget cuts.”
However, the real crisis Singh is referring to includes the effects that go beyond just a lack of necessary resources for the next year. He stresses — and academic research confirms — money is essential for better educational outcomes and future success.
For instance, students’ grades deteriorate by a significant margin if the school doesn’t have adequate funds. Moreover, poor children who attend underfunded schools are less likely to finish high school.
The end result of budget cuts? These children grow into adults with substandard earnings and purchasing power while the nation experiences higher poverty rates. All of which greatly impact the country’s economic development and prosperity.
Singh stresses that these are the reasons why it shouldn’t be possible for districts to simply cut costs without even considering the consequences — we need better solutions that don’t put our children’s futures at risk. With that in mind, Sukhi Singh has cast his name for this year’s City Council District 29 ballot.
As a small business owner from Queens, Singh has spent all his life as an upstanding citizen and an active community member. From organizing after-school programs at his temple to providing meals to first responders during COVID-19, he fought tooth and nail to make NYC a better place. At the same time, he has watched his city transform and develop way beyond its means and has witnessed negligence with tax dollars allocated budgets.
Now armed with unwavering dedication and passion for helping others, Sukhjinder Singh Nijjar decided to step up and be the councilperson the people of NYC deserve — the one that will make a real difference. His plan is to ensure our and our children’s brighter future and safety primarily by eliminating budget cuts where the money is needed the most — education and law enforcement.
However, his end-game is not only to eliminate budget cuts, but to divert additional resources into public schools on top of existing budgets. He believes that the introduction of more technology-based learning practices and the implementation of more modern teaching techniques is crucial for children’s future success.
“Students need interactive tools like tablets, computers, and other devices to help them learn better. We also need to give educators access to more professional development opportunities in order to stay up-to-date with current trends in education. That’s how we can implement new teaching techniques, such as flipped classrooms and project-based learning,” he explains.
As for the rising security concerns that follow the influx of new residents into newly build high rises, Singh’s solution is to implement a community-based program that would serve as support mechanism to law enforcement personnel and first responders.
“Community policing is an integral part of ensuring the safety for everyone living or working in the District 29,” he says. The program would entail training the local community on the standards of law enforcement with plans to concentrate on the boroughs of Queens, including Richmond Hill, Kew Gardens, Forest Hill, Rego Park, and Jamaica.
On top of that, a part of Singh’s plan for better tomorrow is to expand rent stabilization laws, ensure full language access, and support transit accessibility via QueensLink. As he explains, these are all issues that cannot be ignored or taken lightly, and that action needs to be taken now.
As Sukhi Singh states: “Every action has real consequences. We can’t go even a single step forward into a better and brighter future by calling the shots without considering both the short- and long-term impact. That’s what I’m trying to change.”