CA PTA Press Release
May 20, 2009 - SACRAMENTO - California State PTA President Pam Brady called on state leaders to redouble their efforts to steer California through its current economic crisis, following the defeat yesterday of five measures on the May 19 special election ballot.
"The defeat of these measures doesn't change our need to find budget and funding solutions for California; it only adds new urgency to our task," said Brady, on behalf of California State PTA's nearly 1 million volunteer members.
"Now is not the time to retreat," Brady said. "Our state faces an unprecedented fiscal crisis and bold, bipartisan decisions are needed. Now - more than ever - we need to ensure that children are the top priority. We can't keep making cuts to schools - including more than $1 billion proposed in additional cuts during the last month of this current school year alone. Today's students are tomorrow's workforce, and our state's economic health in the future depends on what happens in classrooms now."
Brady said the state must adopt long-term budget reforms, including reducing the voting margin in the Legislature to 55 percent or a simple majority for passage of both the California state budget and revenue measures. California is one of only three states that requires a two-thirds vote.
"We also must dispel this notion once and for all that cutting vital programs is the only way to close the state's deficit. Polls consistently show the public does not want cuts to schools. We need a thoughtful, balanced approach both for the short and long-term."
Brady said PTAs will continue to play an essential role in helping local communities and schools navigate through these challenging economic times.
"PTAs help bring people together to make a positive difference for all children and families," Brady said. "In these times, we'll need to seize on new and creative ways to work together. And parents need to stay well-informed and active so they can assist local and state policymakers in identifying and advocating for steps that will lead toward adequate funding for education.
"An entire generation of California children is threatened unless we change way decisions are being made in Sacramento right now."
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