Claudia Briggs at 916-325-1551 or Mike Myslinski at 650-552-5324
Dean E. Vogel, president of the 325,000-member California Teachers Association, released this statement today:
“On a day when it was announced by an Education Week report that California has dropped two spots to now rank 49th in per-student funding, it’s good to see a state budget proposal that begins to turn the tide. California educators are pleased that Governor Brown’s proposed state budget reflects the will of voters and includes additional funding for students, public schools and colleges as approved in Proposition 30 last year. After years of drastic cuts, it is necessary for the future of our children and the future of California that money owed to students and public education begin to be repaid. It’s time our students had a chance to focus on learning instead of threats of larger class sizes, fewer classes to choose from and fewer teachers to teach.
“CTA is interested to hear more about the proposed new school funding formula and will review all details. We certainly appreciate the recognition that it costs more money to educate students with higher needs, but there are currently many unknowns in this plan, including how it will impact funding for all local schools over time. CTA is concerned about the overall structure of the new system, the quality of the data used to calculate the new formula, and moving toward a new funding system before schools are repaid all of the money they are owed from years of cuts. We want to ensure that the state has adequate resources to reduce class sizes and implement the new Common Core State Standards to improve the quality of teaching and learning. We commend the governor for including the state’s Class Size Reduction program for Kindergarten through third grade as part of the new funding formula, but the 24:1 maximum class size proposal is above current law. We look forward to working with the governor and all lawmakers on behalf of California’s students and educators throughout the year.”
The 325,000-member CTA is affiliated with the 3.2 million-member National Education Association.