Wednesday, June 05, 2013

MAKE YOUR VOICE HEARD ON THE NEW SCHOOL FUNDING FORMULA: California has a once-in-a-generation opportunity to improve how we fund our schools. We must get it right.

2cents smf: Yesterday the LAUSD heard from many LAUSD local budget priorities and from one side only on the so-called Local Control Budget Formula and State Education Budget Reforms.|  No public comment was permitted on the LCFF presentation..The Bd of Ed heard from the Governor’s side only, no one spoke to them about the alternative plans from the State Assembly and Senate …other than that were unacceptable. To LAUSD.

  • Spokespeople said their are no winners and no losers in the LCFF
    • …but left unsaid was that if there is a winner – it would certainly be LAUSD!
    • As the biggest school district in the state with the largest number of kids in poverty and English Language Learners and foster children -  LAUSD has the most to gain. 
  • For LAUSD to not favor the LCFF would be to act against the Districts self interest.


Superintendent Deasy’s proposed 2013-14 budget is based totally on the governor’s LCFF passing exactly as presented with no changes.
LAUSD has no Plan B; this is political Pollyannaism ism at its most dangerous.

But 80% of the children in California don’t attend LAUSD – and ultimately the Sacramento budgeteers must address all school districts and all students equitably and equally in a budget a majority of them can vote for and that the governor will sign.
  • UPDATE: Tom Torlakson, State Superintendent of Public Instruction sent out an email this at 6AM endorsing the Assembly Budget Plan – not the Governor’s: “I am writing to ask for your support for the $1.5 billion the California State Assembly has included for Common Core State Standards implementation in the budget proposal it passed last week and sent to the Budget Conference Committee.”

And the LCFF is not really Education Budget Reform – it’s a one year budget plan – subject to renegotiation next year and every year going forward.

California State PTA Legislative Alert |

June 3, 2013  ::  A Budget Conference Committee made up of legislators from the Assembly and Senate is meeting this week to craft a compromise on the state budget and the new school funding formula proposal.

Now is the time for our voice to be heard.

PTA has long supported moving to a less complex and more transparent method of financing public schools, one that is equitable, provides additional resources based on student needs, helps address the achievement gap, and empowers those closer to our schools with greater decision-making authority.

The current funding proposals take many positive steps toward achieving these goals.

But more must be done. Take action today and urge the Budget Conference Committee to strengthen provisions in the plan that address the following critical issues:

  1. Adequate funding for all — Any final proposal must include a concrete plan for how the state will increase and sustain funding over time to provide all students with the quality education they deserve. The new formula makes positive changes in the way school funding is distributed — but it does not change the fact that overall school funding is inadequate to meet the needs of all children.
  2. Raise the base — The "base grant level" for the new formula as proposed in the May Revision is too low and should be increased. As a starting point, all districts should more quickly be restored to at least 2007-08 levels.
  3. Ensure access to a full curriculum — Whether through a district plan, site plan, block grant or other method, every school district must ensure that all students have access to a full curriculum that includes arts, science, P.E., civics, and more.
  4. Meaningful parent engagement, transparency and accountability — Clear mechanisms for accountability, transparency and meaningful engagement of parents, teachers, staff and local members of the school community must be established. As part of this, additional funding for English Learners, students from low-income households and foster youth must be used to serve those students.
  5. Time for thoughtful implementation — Implementation of the new funding system must take a measured approach to allow governing boards and districts time to plan to meet the needs of all students, and to engage their local stakeholders.
  6. Invest in Early Childhood Education – Though not directly tied to the new funding formula, a robust re-investment in early childhood learning must be included as part of the state budget.

TODAY'S ACTION – Call the two co-chairs of the Budget Conference Committee and encourage them to support California State PTA's recommendations that strengthen the new funding formula for all students.

Click here for a sample script and get started today. Watch for other alerts throughout the week and keep taking action.

Make our voice heard on behalf of all children.

Click here to read California State PTA's full letter to the Budget Committee.

This legislative alert is being sent to subscribers of our Legislative Alerts, Sacramento Update and to all unit, council and district PTA presidents to share with their board members throughout the year.

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