From the Capitol

Governor proposes historic investments in public education

Photo by Joseph Gallagher

Last month, the Governor released his May Budget Revise to accommodate much higher than expected revenues and additional federal stimulus dollars. His revised budget proposal includes unprecedented funding for public education, including the following highlights:

  • Universal Transitional Kindergarten – CSEA identified the importance of TK for four-year-olds a few years ago and have been championing it ever since, which is why we sponsored this year’s bill to implement it. The Governor agrees and has dedicated $2.7 billion per year to make every four-year-old child in California eligible to get an early start on their education.
  • Staff-to-student ratio reduction – The Governor proposes spending $1.1 billion for grants to improve classified and certificated staff ratios. This means more staff will be hired to support students.
  • Universal meals – With $150 million per year, the Governor wants to see every school child in California able to get a healthy meal at school without worrying about how to pay for it. We all know very well that a hungry student cannot focus on their studies. This proposal also includes an additional $100 million in one-time funding to upgrade school kitchens and train food service staff. We hope the state will appropriate the funds necessary to provide universal meals permanently and we will work to see that happen.
  • Cost of living adjustment (also known as COLA) – After last year’s unfunded COLA, the Governor wants to see schools keep up with inflation and is making up for last year and this year with a proposed 5.07 percent COLA for K-12 and COE staff. This shows our state’s commitment to keeping our schools operating with dedicated and experienced staff.

There are many more components of the Governor's proposal. For a much more detailed, formatted copy of the budget summary, click here.

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