The Budget includes total funding of $103.4 billion ($58.8 billion General Fund and $44.6 billion other funds) for all K-12 education programs.The Budget Summary shows that California will be spending $148 billion from the General Fund this year. Total expenditures (see Figure 1) are approximately $209 billion (this site says $215 billion). K-12 education thus receives about 49.5% of all state spending (or 48.1% if you believe the latter number).
And let's not forget that when the lottery was sold to us back in the 80s, lottery money to schools would mean that education would never be shortchanged in California again. How could it be, when so many people play the lottery?
In a state this big and with such high taxes, all that should be good, right? There should be money blowing down the halls of our schools, right? Somehow, though, that isn't happening. In fact, in a state with a budget surplus, there's an effort underway to raise taxes for education:
Californians will be asked next November to vote for a large-scale tax increase to dramatically increase education funding. Over the next several months, the pressure on Governor Newsom and the state legislature to shape their own funding package will intensify.Where is all the money currently going? Why isn't about half the state budget enough? The important question is: how much money should public education cost, and how do we provide a quality education within that amount? No one will ever answer that question, though. We'll just throw more taxpayer money at education, and there will be no real accountability at all to ensure that it's spent wisely.
“In order to provide a high-quality education that improves outcomes for all students and helps close achievement gaps, our schools require significantly greater resources,” said California School Boards Association Executive Director Vernon Billy. “California has an education funding crisis and any policy “solution” that fails to account for this reality is essentially grandstanding.”A liberal's answer to every question about funding is more more more. It doesn't matter how much we already spend, it doesn't matter how much we need to spend, it only matters that we spend more.