Yesterday, Governor Schwarzenegger released the “May Budget Revision” for the State of California. It was presented as fully funding education, and is $1.1 billion more than proposed in January, but the cuts to education funding are still extreme.
The district is now expected to have $2-2.5 million less than it did for the 2007-2008 school year. Already, 24 teachers have been laid off in preparation for these budget shortfalls.
These cuts, even though Proposition 98 won’t be suspended, are accomplished through changes to the Cost of Living Adjustments (COLA), Special Education Funding, Deferred Maintenance changes, Home-to-School Transportation, and “Categorical” program reductions.
The proposed budget bridging is based on the securitization of California’s lottery, and looking for the lottery to fund more than just education — not through cuts, but better performance of the lottery.
If that doesn’t pass with voter approval in November, the Governor is proposing a temporary 1% increase in sales tax.
Yesterday, Governor Schwarzenegger released the “May Budget Revision” for the State of California. As you may remember from previous article (see https://westlakerevelations.com/?q=node/106), the Governor was proposing a 10% across the board cut. That cut would have meant a nearly 7% cut to the Las Virgenes Unified School District’s approximately $100 million budget.
The May revision now no longer proposes to suspend Proposition 98 — which is theoretically there to guarantee spending on education. But, 98 has a couple of branches — what happens when the economy is good, and what happens when it’s bad. And, it doesn’t guarantee all revenue that a school district has to rely on.
The end result is that yesterday’s announcement revises the proposed cuts from 7% to about 2.5%. This is about where LVUSD was projecting when listing the types of cuts that may make sense.
On May 13th, the district made the decision to layoff 24 teachers. This was done because there is no budget in place from the state, but the district has to maintain fiscal responsibility and make decisions based on what it is expecting.
As you may remember, this was out of potential cuts previously identified, where 32 positions were given notice of the possibility of layoffs, in order to keep the district’s options open. This list included:
* Elementary Counselors
* At Risk Secondary Counselors
* Middle School Deans
* Continuation HS Principal
* Regional Occupational Program Coordinator
* Assistant Director of Special Education
* Director of Education Technology
* Kinder- 5th grade teachersÂ
* High School TeachersÂ
* Elementary PE Teacher
The legislature is not expected to come up with a budget by the beginning of the fiscal year — July 1. As in many previous years, the school district has had
C.O.R.E. is the Californians Organized to Rescue Education, a local group that has been organizing efforts to communicate to state government officials on behalf of residents in the area.
They are organizing a rally for tomorrow — Friday, May 16th. In their words:
“CA Budget Crisis Protest Rally
May 16, 2008
10:45am to 12:30pm
300 S. Spring Street
“To take public transit, meet at the Metro Link station at 6610 Canoga Ave. (between Victory and Vanowen) at 8:45am. Free parking is available there and a $5 metro pass allows you to ride buses and trains all day. Board the Orange Line bus to the North Hollywood Red Line station. Take the Red Line to Pershing Square, and walk across the street to our staging area where all protesters will meet before walking the four blocks to the Governorâ??s office.
“If you choose to drive, please consider carpooling. Take 110 Freeway South to 6th Street exit. Pershing Square is between Olive and Hill and 5th and 6th streets. Public parking under the park is $15 for the day. Please arrive no later than 10:30.
“At Friday’s rally we will deliver to the Governor over 700 letters and postcards, some handwritten by our students, attached to a 1000′ roll of red bulletin board paper. This roll, when unfurled, will extend across a city block. It should be a sight to see and we encourage all our parents to be there to share the moment with us.”