California Educator

April/May 2020

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Page 35 of 51

S M A L L E R C L A S S E S , increased resources, and more of the dedicated educators who support, nurture and inspire all Cal- ifornia students are just a glimpse of what's possible when we put Schools and Communities First! The vision for fully resourced schools and local services became even clearer earlier this year when a University of Southern California study detailed the $12 billion that will be reclaimed every year through the Schools and Communities First initiative (SCF) and how much will be invested in edu- cation and vital services in different regions of the state. e investments would literally change communities with an influx of much-needed resources — with estimates of $3.75 billion annually in Los Angeles County, $447 million in the Central Val- ley, and a whopping $4.61 billion in the San Francisco Bay Area. This increase in funding will come from closing corporate property tax loopholes, which have allowed big corporations and wealthy investors to avoid paying their fair share for our schools and public services. For more than 40 years, this scheme has starved public education and local service providers of the resources needed for our students and communities to thrive. CTA President E. Toby Boyd says SCF is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to start to reverse this abysmal situation, which has had disparate impacts on communities across the state. " This inequity as a result of corporate greed has had a catastrophic impact on our schools and communities, felt dis- proportionately in communities of color," Boyd says. " While wealthier school districts can often offset funding cuts with private donations and parcel taxes, the vast majority of schools A Once-in- a-Lifetime Opportunity What the Schools and Communities First initiative means for your community By Julian Peeples 34 Advocacy

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