With no state money flowing in due to a four-month long Pennsylvania budget battle, the Philadelphia School Reform Commission has approved new borrowing for the city's schools.
The SRC voted on Nov. 2 to authorize $250 million in borrowing and also authorized the district to lend itself $40 million from its capital fund to keep operations going through end of December. The SRC has governed Philadelphia's public schools since December 2001 when Pennsylvania took on oversight of the district, which is the eighth largest in the nation. Pennsylvania has been without a budget since the new fiscal year began on July 1 thanks to an impasse between the Republican controlled legislature and Gov. Tom Wolf, a Democrat.
The Philadelphia School District was downgraded in August 2014 one notch by Moody's Investors Service to Ba3 due to a weakened ability to deliver core services stemming from program cuts and losing students to charter schools.
Wolf appointed veteran educator Marjorie Neff as SRC chairwoman last March to replace Bill Green.