Governor Shapiro Joins Philadelphia Students for Breakfast, Highlights How Investing in Education Creates Opportunity for Pennsylvania Students and Families

In the 2023-24 budget, Governor Shapiro secured the largest increase in K-12 basic education funding in Pennsylvania history and universal breakfast for 1.7 million students.


The Governor’s 2024-25 budget proposal would continue that historic progress with a nearly $1.1 billion increase in basic education funding, building on the work of the Basic Education Funding Commission

Philadelphia, PA – Today, Governor Josh Shapiro, Secretary of Education Khalid Mumin, Representative Jordan Harris, Senator Tony Williams, and Superintendent Tony Watlington Jr. visited George W. Childs Elementary School to serve free breakfast to hundreds of students and highlight how the Governor’s 2024-25 budget proposal will create opportunity for every Pennsylvania child and give them the freedom to chart their own course.

Governor Shapiro is focused on ensuring all Pennsylvania children have the opportunity to succeed – and his budget proposal includes significant investments to fully fund public schools, support our teachers, and provide high-quality, affordable, and accessible childcare and early learning opportunities for families. The Governor’s budget builds on this historic progress and delivers for K-12 education across the Commonwealth by building on the bipartisan work of the Basic Education Funding Commission (BEFC). Governor Shapiro has proposed:

  •  $1.1 billion in new funding for our K-12 education programs. Of this increase, nearly $900 million is proposed as a first-year adequacy investment as recommended by the BEFC. The remaining $200 million will be distributed through the Basic Education Funding Formula.
  • $300 million for environmental school repairs.
  • A $50 million increase in special education funding.
  • A $50 million investment in school safety and security improvements.
  • $30 million in Pre-K programs for teacher recruitment and retention.
  • $15 million for student teacher stipends.
“Ensuring all Pennsylvania children have the freedom to chart their own course and the opportunity to succeed is critical to our Commonwealth’s future – and since taking office, my Administration has worked to create opportunity for every child by investing in our K-12 schools. From delivering the largest increase in K-12 basic education funding in Pennsylvania history to securing universal free breakfast for 1.7 million K-12 students – we are giving every student the tools they need to succeed,” said Governor Josh Shapiro. “My budget proposal this year builds on the historic progress we’ve made and delivers a comprehensive solution for education in Pennsylvania, with a nearly $1.1 billion increase in basic education funding and increased investments in Pennsylvania students, teachers, and safe and healthy classrooms. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for us to do right by our kids – and my budget delivers for them.”

In the 2023-24 budget, the Governor secured historic investments in K-12 education – including the largest single-year increase in the basic education funding (BEF) formula in Pennsylvania history, delivering universal free breakfast for 1.7 million students, delivered funding for school building repairs, and an increase for mental health resources in schools, and more, including:

  • $567 million increase for Pennsylvania school districts to be distributed through the BEF formula, enabling all school districts to have the basic resources they need to provide a high-quality education for Pennsylvania students. 
  • $175 million for school building repairs.
  • $100 million for school-based mental health counselors and resources for students.
  • $50 million increase in special education funding, reinforcing Pennsylvania’s commitment to equitable education for all students.
  • $46.5 million increase to provide universal free breakfast to 1.7 million Pennsylvania public school students.
  • A $23.5 million investment in workforce training and vo-tech programs.
  • $10 million to provide Pennsylvania’s student teachers with stipends so the Commonwealth can get more well-trained teachers into our classrooms.
  • $7 million to support dual enrollment opportunities for high school students allowing them to take advanced courses for college credit and chart their own course.

“Since taking office, the Shapiro Administration has shown a historic commitment to Pennsylvania’s public schools, as evidenced by the largest increase in school funding in history and the first-ever budget line item dedicated to providing free breakfast to all students,” said Secretary of Education Dr. Khalid N. Mumin. “As a former teacher and administrator, I’ve seen firsthand the incredible benefits that come from investing in our schools. Giving learners the resources, they need while they’re in school—whether that’s new textbooks, expanded course offerings, or a nutritious meal—helps them focus on learning today to reach infinite possibilities of success tomorrow.”

The Philadelphia School District has an acute need for more adequate funding to support its student population and address critical infrastructure needs, with a statewide funding shortfall of over $1.5 billion. As a result of the funding secured in the 2023-24 budget, the Philadelphia School District was allocated $1.49 billion in basic education funding – an $85.5 million increase from the prior year. The Philadelphia School District would receive a $245 million increase through the Governor’s 2024-25 budget if enacted.

The Governor’s budget also proposes a $50 million annual investment in school safety and security improvements and $300 million in sustainable funding for environmental repair projects in school buildings to address the environmental issues that threaten the health, safety, and opportunity of students, including those in Philadelphia School District buildings.

"Ensuring that every child in Pennsylvania begins their school day with a nutritious breakfast is crucial. It's more than just combating hunger; it's about nurturing minds, promoting equality, and laying the foundation for academic success,” said Majority Appropriations Chairman Jordan A. Harris. "Offering free breakfast in schools is a vital step towards creating a brighter and healthier future for all students."

“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to join the Governor in greeting the next generation of greatness. This event highlights the importance of providing free school breakfast to ensure every student starts their day with a healthy meal,” said Senator Anthony Williams. “Additionally, it emphasizes the need for adequate education funding, as it plays a crucial role in preparing our students for a successful future. By investing in education and supporting initiatives like free school breakfast, we are investing in the potential of our youth and working towards creating a brighter future for all.”

For more information on how the Governor’s proposed budget will make progress to support every Pennsylvania child, visit  

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