The 5th grade culmination service project team wants to thank you one more time for all of your assistance with the Upward Bound House (UBH) project. We provided enough books and shelving to create libraries for 6 housing facilities and assembled 225 meal kits. The kids were willing and helpful as they quickly completed such huge tasks during their lunch over the last two weeks. Some visited the Santa Monica UBH location after school and got a firsthand look at the services and housing offered through Upward Bound House, while others asked questions about homelessness during a presentation given by Emili from at UBH.
Upward Bound House is grateful for our gifts and we hope that our students gained valuable lessons in this process. We appreciate everyone’s contribution as it required effort from students, staff, teachers, and parents to make it happen. Thank you!
SACRAMENTO – California State PTA is glad to see that Governor Newsom’s revised budget reflects the values of PTA: to positively impact the lives of all children and families.
This budget invests more in education, more in health services and more in support for families. It also reflects a growing consensus on the importance of early education, mental health services and support for teachers.
Add to that list a significant investment to combat homelessness, which affects too many families and children in the state of California.
Here is a quick look at the budget highlights and new spending priorities.
- Special education gets a 21 percent increase in funding over last year, as well as funding to help support medical costs and improve the transition of three year-olds with disabilities from regional centers to local educational agencies
- Support for teachers includes money for an estimated 4,500 loan assumptions (repayments) of up to $20,000 for newly credentialed teachers to work in high-need schools. There is also money for teacher and administrator training and support
- Computer science gets funding for broadband infrastructure and a state computer science coordinator
- Pension relief is prioritized with the state giving money for partial relief from the increased pension costs of local school districts
- Charter school enrollment is addressed with proposals to prevent families from being wrongfully turned away from the public school of their choice
- Total K-12 Proposition 98 funding at the time of the May budget revision is $75.6 billion in 2017-18, $78.1 billion in 2018-19 and $81.1 billion in 2019-20.
- The budget includes money for a long-term master plan for early learning and care that will provide for a more well-aligned comprehensive early learning and care system
- There are new investments to increase access to subsidized child care for low-income families, as well as new investments to increase access to pre-school and expand full day kindergarten
- Also included is funding for trauma and developmental screenings, home visiting services, an expansion of paid family leave and a pilot child savings account program to support and encourage families to build assets for their children’s post-secondary education.
- The budget continues to expand the Earned Income Tax Credit. The Cal-EITC: A Cost-of-Living Refund will help low-income families with young children by expanding the additional credit proposed in January from $500 to $1,000
- The May budget revision also provides for monthly advanced payments contingent on a federal waiver to ensure participants do not lose federal benefits. This increased tax refund will help economically distressed families with the costs of food, rent, and child care
- The budget also makes important investments in higher education, health and human services and efforts to combat homelessness.
It would be great to see more dedicated funding for after school programs.
Does this solve the underfunding of California schools? Overall, the budget is a smart investment of the funds available but it does not fix the long-term needs. As schools continue to struggle with growing expenses, we urge the governor and the legislature to develop a plan to bring California education funding to the levels of our highest performing states.
Next Steps for the Budget
After the governor announces the May revision, the Budget Committees of the Senate and Assembly also each adopt their version of the budget. A conference committee irons out differences between these versions.
By June 15, the Senate and Assembly leaders huddle with the governor to hash out the final details and pass a balanced budget by a majority vote of both houses. On July 1, the state begins the new fiscal year.
About California State PTA:
California State PTA connects families, schools and communities. We are part of the foundation of our public-education system and a trusted messenger to millions of members, parents, families, educators and allied agencies throughout the state. PTA is the nation’s largest volunteer-led child-advocacy association working to drive improvements in the education, health and well-being of all children and families. For more information: www.capta.org.
All 4th graders in the country can go to all of our National Parks for free. That includes incoming and outgoing 4th graders and it is good for everyone in your car! So, if you’re interested in visiting one or many of our National Parks this summer or next summer or anytime during the school year next year, this will work for you. Here are the details:Just click on to the “Get Your Pass” section. Then click on the “4th Graders Play” section. Then another “4th Graders Play” section will pop up. Check off the box in the “I’m a 4th grader” and then it goes to one more section. Click “Start” in the “Dear Diary” section. You need to “answer” two questions about what you want to do and see by selecting from a couple choices and then you can print out the pass. Print out the pass with the bar code and take that to the first park you visit. Either at the booth you enter or the welcome center (whichever you have to go through first) give them your print out and tell them you’ve got your 4th grader with you. You’ll get free entry into the park. You’ll also get a laminated pass at the welcome center if they don’t have it at the booth. You can keep that laminated pass in your wallet and then throw out the print out. You can then use the laminated pass to visit all the National Parks for free!Have fun!
Summer camp is only five weeks away! Register now for one of our camps or alternate weekly between our three camps: Camp Santa Monica, Sports Experience, and Water Adventures (see Water Adventures flyer here.) See the flyer here .
By now you’ve probably seen the many appointed PTA positions that are open for next year. In addition to chairing “Standing Committees”, we have a number of important behind-the-scenes roles that are critical to the success of our PTA. These positions are perfect for working parents who are not able to attend daytime meetings but still want to be involved in the important work of our school, grandparents, and parents who may be curious about the PTA but are not ready to commit to a larger role. Please email incoming PTA President Katie Rosenfeld (email@example.com