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President, Lucia Mar Teachers Association

It has become increasingly obvious that unless action is taken soon on the budget in Sacramento, school districts throughout California could face unprecedented budget cuts next year. The budget synopsis recently distributed at a Lucia Mar school board meeting showed almost $9.5 million in cuts needed to balance the district budget next year!

The hard work of our staff has helped establish many successful programs for students at all levels. All those efforts could be for naught with a 16 percent cut in revenue to the district’s operating budget.

Twenty years ago, Proposition 98 was passed overwhelmingly by California voters, establishing the minimum level of funding public schools should receive. Unfortunately, the legislature has for the past few years acted as if the Proposition 98 funding is the maximum level. As a result, California ranks third from the bottom in per-pupil spending, at $2,400 less than the national average. California teachers educate the most diverse group of students in the nation, with many of our students both socio- and economically disadvantaged. Despite our status as a low-wealth district, the Lucia Mar Unified School District has until now been able to offer an outstanding education to our wide variety of students. But unless things change in Sacramento, the foreseeable future looks rather desperate.
 Is it reasonable that the wealthiest state in the nation funds each student’s education at a rate that is thousands of dollars less than the national average? Lucia Mar teachers encourage all citizens to contact their legislators in Sacramento regarding this school funding crisis. Please support our schools—they are our best investment for the future!

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