SCHENECTADY, N.Y. -- According to officials at the Schenectady City School District, if you have more white students than Hispanic or black, you will get more state aid.
Cathy Lewis said, "Schenectady School District is a minority as majority school district and we don't get the proper funding from the state to which we're entitled and this is a matter of civil rights."
School board president, Cathy Lewis, says the district receives only 54 percent of the mandated aid allotted to them, leaving them with a $60 million shortfall. But schools with a majority of white students receive more. The median amount of aid received, Lewis says, is 82 percent, but for minority as majority districts.
"Approximately eight percent of those school districts receive the full funding," said Lewis.
That's why school officials are taking it upon themselves to file a complaint with the U.S. Justice Department demanding answers. Less funding means more cuts. And as one parent put it, how can you expect any more than 50 percent from students if they only have 50 percent of the resources they need to work with?
"How do you expect the kids to perform better if they don't have anything? You have to have things in order to perform better," said Racine Cole.
The Superintendent is inviting all parents and community members to the Central Park International Magnet School Tuesday night at 5:30 to sign the complaint.
Lewis said, "It's a chance for everyone to learn about this situation and why we're so unfunded."
Lewis says the school is planning to file the complaint within the next couple of weeks, in conjunction with a similar complaint the Middletown School District is filing. And for some, action can't come soon enough, because what happens now could have a domino effect in the future.
"The kids end up suffering, that means welfare goes up, unemployment goes up, solely because you're not giving them the tools they need to succeed as adults," said Cole.