Count this as an installment of Another Reason to Stone an Educator. We used to keep count on the reasons but about a year ago we ran outnumbers.
Just so we’re clear, “educators” – not necessarily “teachers” – and schools of education are probably the biggest threat to the American way of life. They truly make ISIS look like a JV team.
In this installment, we find the idiots who run the schools in California surging to the forefront of people who are contributing to
global warming climate change strange weather patterns with every breath they take.
On July 1, 2013, Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law the Local Control Funding Formula, depicting it as a “truly revolutionary” change in California public schools. Instead of the previous basic formula of paying districts based on average daily attendance of students, the new method directed 20 percent more money to “high-needs students” – English learners, foster children and those from impoverished families. The additional resources were to go directly to help these students improve their performance, not to general school budgets.
Seems like everybody in the state was cheering this change. After all, everybody but conservatives understands that giving lots more money to a hide-bound bureaucracy solves every perceived problem.
We are two years and uncounted millions of dollars down the road toward saving these “high needs students” from a life of poverty and misery.
Districts up and down the state have put LCFF dollars into operating budgets to help pay for raises and general programs. In the giant Los Angeles Unified School District, the United Teachers Los Angeles specifically cited the additional funds as being a source to pay for a 17.6 percent raise it sought. The UTLA ended up with a two-year, 10 percent raise.
The gnomes at the bloated – even for California – State Department of Education have given school districts direction on use of LCFF funds. They’ve told the districts that money HAS to be used for increased or improved assistance to struggling students. Except if the district has a pay scale that makes it difficult to attract or retain teachers.
That’s nice, but the Catch 22 here is that the law was passed with no method to hold the districts accountable. The state surveyed 50 school districts, including the 11 largest districts, and exactly none had safeguards to ensure the additional money was spent on students.
You can bet your NEA union dues it won’t be spent on students.