FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SALINAS – Local members of the California Education Coalition today discussed the impact of Governor Schwarzenegger’s broken promises on education prior to a legislative Education Town Hall meeting at the Salinas Community Center.
Local parents, teachers, school employees and administrators highlighted the fact that Governor Schwarzenegger has broken his word to California’s students and schools on two fronts, withholding $2 billion in this year’s budget and proposing changes to the voter approved Proposition 98 – changes which would eliminate the minimum funding protections for schools.
“Last year at this time, the Education Coalition, representing more than one million members, worked with this Governor on a solution for the state’s budget problem – a problem that was not created by our kids,” said Jane Mitchel, president of the Monterey High School PTSA. “This Governor promised that $2 billion in funding for our schools would be restored and that our kids would receive their fair share of any additional state revenues. He has broken his promise and once again our kids and our schools will suffer.”
Governor Schwarzenegger’s budget proposal underfunds Proposition 98; it reneges on his promise to our schools and students by withholding $2 billion; and will only lead to more school closures, larger class sizes, additional layoffs of teachers and school support personnel, and the elimination of key student programs.
“In the past four years, California’s schools have endured billions in funding cuts,” said Phil Moore, president of the Salinas Valley Federation of Teachers. “As a parent and a classroom teacher I see how these cuts impact our local schools every day. We should be investing more resources in our kids, not cutting. The Governor needs to keep his promise to our schools.”
“The Governor’s proposals ignore the will of the voters and weaken school funding protections by allowing devastating mid-year cuts to our schools,” said Leslie Girard, a library technician in the King City Union School District. “Californians have made it clear that education needs to be our highest priority. We expect our leaders in Sacramento to take the future of our children as seriously as we do.”
The Education Coalition, which consists of organizations representing more than a million parents, teachers, school employees and administrators, also launched a radio ad campaign last week as part of their campaign to protect basic school funding in California. The ads are on the air in every market across California, and may be heard on the CTA website here.