Contact: Robin Swanson (916) 204-6890
Governor’s proposed budget plan reneges on July budget agreement signed into law to restore money owed to schools
Sacramento – Today, the California Teachers Association and its partners in the Education Coalition called on the Governor and legislators to keep their promises to California’s students. Specifically, the Governor has proposed reneging on the July budget agreement he signed into law and the commitment to restore more than $11.2 billion to our students and schools, as required by Proposition 98, the voter-approved minimum school funding guarantee.
“The Governor claims to be ‘protecting’ education, but that protection is hurting students, cutting billions more from our schools and colleges, and breaking education promises lawmakers made last year,” said David A. Sanchez, president of the California Teachers Association. “The governor is adding insult to injury by trying to renege on restoring the money owed to our students at a time when our public schools are already reeling from massive cuts. Our students and our state’s future deserve better.”
“The Governor wants to retroactively cut last year’s funding to schools and default on yet another promise to California’s students,” said Allan Clark, president of the California School Employees Association. “It’s shameful that our state’s leaders would turn their backs on our students yet again.”
In addition, contrary to his State of the State promise to “protect” school funding, the Governor has proposed another $2.5 billion cut from schools and students. That is on top of the $17 billion already cut from education funding over the last two years. If the Governor’s proposal is passed, every California student in grades K-12 will be cut by a total of $2,500 per year.
“Lawmakers who support the Governor’s plan and vote for any budget that includes further cuts to schools are breaking the promise to children that they made in July,” said Linda Mayo, Vice President for Communications of the California State PTA. “California students are being denied the individual attention they need to succeed. It’s time for our leaders to stand up for students and make the right decision to invest in the future of our state.” After decades of budget cuts and our students being forced to do “more with less,” a recent report from UCLA, entitled "Educational Opportunities in Hard Times," found that 67 percent of principals in California reported that class sizes had increased, with 74 percent of elementary school principals reporting larger class sizes. The same study showed that 75 percent of principals reported that summer school had been reduced or eliminated.
“Voters understand the importance of investing in education,” said Bob Wells, Executive Director of the Association of California School Administrators. “According to the latest statewide PPIC poll, 82 percent of Californians oppose reductions in K-12 schools to fix the budget deficit. Our state’s leaders have decimated education funding in our state over the past two years, and any attempt to renege on the deal to restore funding to our students is reprehensible.”