Board of Education Facility, Audit and Budget Committee
Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2012
Background: Two measures on the November 6 ballot directly affect students, staff and schools of the Los Angeles Unified School District. Propositions 30 and 38 both have financial consequences that could result in deeper budget cuts, including 15 additional days of instruction, further shortening the academic year to May 10, 2013 that would end three weeks earlier.
If Proposition 30 passes:
- The current school year has been cut by five instructional days because of state budget cuts and is scheduled to end on May 31, 2013. If the measure is approved, at least two and potentially all instructional days would be restored.
- The teachers and other LAUSD employees are scheduled to take 10 unpaid furlough days during the current school year. If the measure passes, the number of furloughs days would be reduced.
If Proposition 30 fails:
- The District would receive $439 less per student, resulting in new budget cuts during the 2012-13 school year of approximately $255 million, on top of the $557 million deficit that was already closed.
- The school year could be shortened 15 days, as allowed by the governor’s budget. Teachers and other employees could be required to take an additional 15 unpaid furlough days on top of the 10 already scheduled, losing more than a month’s pay.
If Prop. 38 passes:
- The District would face immediate budget cuts potentially that could shorten the school year by three weeks. The reason is: the new funding would not begin until July 1 after the 2012-13 academic year has ended.
- The District, for the 2013-14 school year and at least 12 more years, would receive additional funding to reduce class sizes, which have grown larger due to budget cuts. Teachers and students would get updated materials and textbooks deferred due to less funding. Art, music, science and vocational instruction would be restored or expanded. Technology and computers for the classroom would be improved. Early childhood education would get a boost.
- The District would receive $1,000 to $1,400 in funding per student. Money could not be spent to lengthen the school year and there are other restrictions.
If Prop. 38 fails:
- The District would receive no infusion of new funding, guaranteed through 2025.
- Many budget cuts would not be restored.
If both Propositions pass:
- The proposition with the most yes votes would be implemented
LAUSD’s recent history of budget cuts resulted from inadequate funding from the state.
- For five consecutive straight years, the District has experienced significant budget deficits.
- Class sizes since 2008-09 have increased.
- After school programs have been cut.
- Thousands of teachers and other employees have been laid off.
- Fewer instructional days have led to a condensed school year.
State funding for schools has dropped to 47th out of the 50 states according to the Quality Counts report from Education Week. http://toped.svefoundation.org/2012/01/13/ca-student-spending-near-bottom/
State educational funding, ranked 5th in 1965, has declined dramatically over the decades since then. (http://www.kpbs.org/news/2010/mar/23/ca-schools-financial-fall/)
Public schools statewide were once ranked among the best in the nation.
The largest cuts in the state budget from 2007-08 to 2010-11 were in K-12: California Budget Project (http://cbp.org/pdfs/2012/120410_K-12_by_District_Budget_Cuts.pdf)
- The State General Fund was cut by $11.4 billion, 11.1% of the budget.
- Education spending fell by $7 billion or 13.8% of the budget.