If You Signed, You Made a Difference


sen maj mtg_edited-1Thank you to all who signed our online school funding petition.  You made a difference!

Spring 2014, Sixth District PTA started the online petition to increase school funding and invest additional funds in pre-school and educated, professional trained teachers.

Great news!  In the 2014-15 approved education budget, the Legislature and Governor Brown increased per-student funding, and allotted $264 million for early learning.

That is the biggest investment in early education in the last decade, and a strong step in the right direction.  Additionally, the trailer bill implementing the budget makes a long-term commitment to getting all low-income 4 year olds in a high-quality program in future years.

Spring 2013, Sixth District PTA sponsored a letter writing campaign asking Governor Brown and CA Legislators to increase pre-school funding and K-12 funding for all K-12 students.

Waging a publicity campaign, PTA Advocacy asked people to sign the letter, and once the letters were gathered, a group of PTA advocates delivered 100s of letters to Sacramento – driving them up and faxing them in.

The result was an increase in the block grant funding for all K-12 students, and more funds allocated for preschools – a resounding success for grass roots advocacy, and another victory for PTA.

Thank you to all who participated in the online petition and letter writing campaigns.  You made a difference!

If you have not yet signed the petition, it’s still live, and your signature is still needed.  Click here to review, sign and share the petition.

Below is the text of the letter sent to Governor Brown:

 

Dear Governor Brown:
As parents, community members, proud Californians, and voters, we believe it is important to express our reactions to, and
offer our recommendations on, the proposed LCFF (Local Control Funding Formula) for California’s public schools:
1. Reform: We appreciate the need to reform an education funding system that is complex, opaque, and inequitable. We
support the Governor’s efforts to achieve simplicity, transparency, and equity.
2. Legislative Process: The Governor’s proposals represent a major shift in education policy, not simply a tweaking of funding
amounts. It is therefore essential that the reforms go through the policy committees, with full public hearings, rather than
being treated as a line item in a budget trailer bill.
3. Adequacy: The current proposals do not include additional funding. California is now 49th among the states in per-pupil
funding. California spends about $8,400 per student per year; the national average is about $11,700; and top-performing
states spend $16,000 to $22,000. We urge the legislature first to determine what it costs to educate a student, and then to
figure out where to get the funding.
4. Universal Pre-School: In determining what it costs to educate a student, consider investing in pre-school to reduce perpupil
education costs. Many children are already behind when they start Kindergarten. Each dollar invested in high-quality
pre-school improves student achievement and saves about $7 by reducing the need for subsequent remediation. When
teachers are freed from having to focus on struggling students, all students benefit.
5. Better Teacher Preparation and Support: In determining what it costs to educate a student, consider investing in teachers
to reduce per-pupil costs. One third of California’s new teachers leave within five years. A dollar invested in pre-service
education and in-service support saves about $3 by reducing this high (and very costly) attrition rate.
6. Base Grant: The LCFF proposed base grant is severely inadequate. It needs to be increased so every child has access to a
full, well-rounded curriculum that includes arts, science, technology, engineering, physical education, civics and career
technical education.
7. Regional Cost Adjustments: Any school funding formula must include adjustments for regional cost differences.
8. No more cuts: Since Californians just voted (in Prop 30) to increase funding for schools, we strongly oppose the LAO
(Legislative Analyst’s Office) proposal for further cuts to some school districts.
California’s economy is one of the largest in the world, and our productivity and creativity are among the best anywhere. We
want to work together with you to build and fund an educational system we can all be proud of: one that befits our status by
creating opportunities for California’s children, enriching their lives, and preparing them to be the citizens of the world that
we all want them to be. Toward that end, we urge you to consider the principles expressed above in developing legislation.
Thank you — all of you in Sacramento — for your hard work on the difficult issues that mean so much to the future of
California’s children and the state as a whole.
Sincerely,
Signature _______________________________________________ Date ________________________
Printed Name ___________________________________________
Address ________________________________________________
e-mail __________________________________________________