While Gov. Shapiro works to frame the failure of the student scholarship legislation as an argument over the budget negotiating process, it is important to note a failure he cannot credibly pass off on someone else.

As a candidate, Josh Shapiro openly and unambiguously proclaimed his support for school choice and made this promise to the thousands of families of children trapped in failing schools. He positioned himself as someone willing to break with the leftward trend and stand up to special interests who are so deeply invested in the current system which abandons the most vulnerable among our students and families.

One week before he broke this promise, Gov. Shapiro appeared on Fox News and said the following when asked about the school choice legislation:

“Let me just say, in general, I believe every child of God deserves a shot here in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and one of the best ways we can guarantee their success is making sure every child has a quality education. I’ve been very clear that I’m open to that concept that you described a moment ago, but I’ve also made crystal clear that I won’t take a dollar out of our public schools in order to achieve that.”

READ MORE — From the Editors: Shapiro caves on school funding, trust drops in Harrisburg

Gov. Shapiro made a deal with the Senate. That’s politics. But the deal that matters most was the promise to families in desperate search of a school that will allow their children to learn and grow. Real people, such as the families I represent in Columbia Borough and families like them across the commonwealth, continue to suffer.

Gov. Shapiro has described himself as “competitive as hell.” We can only wish that energy for competition had been put to use for Pennsylvania citizens, not solely for his political ambitions.

While our chamber was successful in holding the line on many of Gov. Shapiro’s proposals for big spending, we consented to parts of his agenda with the clear understanding that he would honor his promises to the people of Pennsylvania. He did not. As a result, Josh Shapiro delivered only two things: broken promises and real harm to the families who counted on him to keep his word.

Moving forward — this time without illusions about the current governor — we need to recommit ourselves to legislation and programs for vulnerable students. We need to focus on early literacy programs and a teacher-to-classroom pipeline to ensure the best teachers for whatever classrooms we fund. We must modernize our outdated education system through the work of the Commission on Education and Economic Competitiveness. The commission stands ready to work with families to repair the many things that are broken in public education.

And, yes, we need to continue to push for the kind of lifeline legislation the governor blithely cast aside to satisfy the leftish progressive wing of his party.

Abandoned students are counting on us. This time, we need to be the ones holding onto the other end of the lifeline. Unlike the governor, we won’t let go.

Ryan Aument (R-Lancaster) is a member of the Senate Majority Whip and co-chair of Building a Stronger Pennsylvania, a political committee that advocates for free-market solutions.

2 thoughts on “Sen. Ryan Aument: Shapiro’s broken promises, families’ broken trust”

  1. ” Gov. Shapiro made a deal with the Senate. That’s politics.” Sorry Senator Aument but Gov. Shapiro made a deal with the DEVIL AKA the corrupt teacher unions. You don’t think for one moment that these unions which are no more than a branch of the Democrat Party would stand for any action that threatens their power and control…do you? Follow the money!

  2. DAN,
    Senator Aument is aligned with Gov. Shapiro; and, to answer your question in fact no Senator Aument did not think for one moment that these unions would stand for any action that threatened their power and control. Senator Aument is a R.I.N.O., his website claims he is majority Whip and on it there is zero mention of being a Republican and he knew for many months that this would be the outcome. The poor children in PA get crushed again by scum that use phrases such as: “that’s politics.”. And in 2024 the Republicans are going to get trounced again. Do not vote at all. Let Democrats win in a landslide, watch them go full tilt, and then get active as a voter post 2024. Do not give up your guns when they try and take them shortly. Obey the law but unless there is an amendment to undue the 2nd amendment, secure your gun(s.) Violence is not the answer. Get active as a voter after 2024. Let these corrupt villains totally expose themselves.

    Mike Sweeney, Havertown, PA

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