CA Education Policy News Update

May 26th, 2011

CA Education Policy News Update

By: Mona Vakilifathi | 01:05 AM

As mentioned in the last PACE "CA Education Policy News Update" blog post, the May budget revise was released last week by Governor Brown with some opposition from the Legislative Analyst’s Office. This week state Democrats have also stated their disagreement with Brown regarding how the $6.6 billion tax revenue should be allocated among state services. The Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) provides a summary of the May budget revise and The Sacramento Bee provides an overview of the interests and goals of different state actors, state entities, and interest groups. Also, the SI&A Cabinet Report provides a response from educators and education advocacy groups as to how the May revise begins to address the years of cuts California’s schools have faced.
In response to the May revise, state Democrats disagreed with Brown’s plan to use part of the state’s tax revenue to pay back California’s debt, supporting instead the refund of prior cuts to child care and welfare-to-work services, as reported by The Sacramento Bee, the L.A. Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, and the SI&A Cabinet Report. These articles also state that the Assembly Budget Subcommittee on Education intends to reallocate state funds to provide more funding for K-12 education and community colleges. Overall, the state Democrats seem to disagree with Brown as to whether part of the tax revenue should be spent refunding state services or addressing the loans for future years.
Last week, the L.A. Times reported how California’s lawmakers may (or may not) be financially punished for not passing the state budget in a by its constitutional deadline.  Another L.A. Times article reports how state Republican bills are being ignored during the current budget talks and how politics may be interfering with the state’s ability to preserve its state parks and other state services.
Education-Specific News
Evaluation of State Education Funding Flexibility: On Monday, the SI&A Cabinet Report mentioned the release of a new PPIC report that discussed the effects of lessening the restrictions of the state’s education funding formulas and policy recommendations to take into consideration further reform. In addition, as reported by California Watch and the L.A. Times, the RAND Corporation and PACE released a report discussing the effects of financial flexibility and the details how the money was spent by 10 school districts once the categorical mandates were lessened in 2009.
Federal Funding for California: The SI&A Cabinet Report and the L.A. Times report that California and eight other states are eligible for a $50 million consolation prize in the “Race to the Top” competition. It is unclear whether California will apply again for these federal funds. The SI&A Cabinet Report, in another article, reports that California received $69 million from the federal government for its School Improvement Grant (SIG) application to improve the state’s lowest performing schools.
Cutting CALPADS Funding: The Thoughts on Public Education blog, in two articles here and here; and the SI&A Cabinet Report, in two articles here and here, report that Brown intends to cut the funding for CALPADS and CALTIDES, the state’s longitudinal data system on its pupils’ and teachers’ performance respectively, as a part of his recent May budget proposal. Brown’s funding cut is deemed the result of the poor management and execution of the data since implementation.
California DREAM Act: Two weeks ago, the Assembly passed AB 130, also known as the California DREAM Act, as reported by The Sacramento Bee in two articles here and here. After passage by the Assembly, the bill needs to be signed into law by Brown, an advocate for financial aid for illegal immigrants, to be officially enacted as law. This week, the Fresno Bee reports that members of the Assembly will vote on the bill at the end of this week.
Mismanagement of the Commission on Teacher Credentialing: Two weeks ago, The Sacramento Bee reported, in two articles here and here, that the Chair of the Joint Legislative Audit Committee, Assemblyman Ricardo Lara, has asked for the resignation of the executive director and others in leadership positions at the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CTC) due to the mismanagement of teacher misconduct cases and other management issues. This week, the SI&A Cabinet Report states that the CTC has made recent changes in its management of teacher misconduct cases and has complied to all the recommendations made by the California State Auditor’s Office.
Seismic Retrofitting Funding Reform: California Watch, in two articles here and here, and SI&A Cabinet Report provide recent updates regarding seismic retrofitting funding reform for California schools, where schools are now able access funds to better equip their facilities for a potential earthquake.
Want more information about any of these stories or about a story that was not reported in this post? Feel free to leave a request in the “Comments” section below.


It is the May Revision. Not a "revise" That is because it is a noun not a verb. And you hold yourselves out as "researchers" best john