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Regional approach to reducing educational inequality

From: domainremoved <Jay>
Date: Thu, 25 Aug 2016 13:04:24 -0700

Dear Council Members,

Attached are the charts concerning the inequality in education across
the 23 school districts in San Mateo County that support my comments at
last Tuesday Council meeting.

The spending per student chart makes the inequality crystal clear. The
results of this inequality are seen in the charts on teacher salaries
and a proxy for class size.

The chart on revenue per student across school districts makes it clear
that two common suggestions to reduce inequality won't work:

1. Merging school districts - the revenue per student is so low for
LCFF districts that merging districts and merging property tax revenue
will not lift those districts above the LCFF guarantee of the State.
The only effect will be to reduce the revenue that the State needs to
send to the merged districts. A merger of districts would save the
State money but not increase revenue per student and in fact decrease
the revenue for the community funded districts before the merger.

2. Silicon Valley successes such as Facebook and Google will raise the
property values in the Ravenswood School District and reduce
inequality. Yes, the property values are increasing -- 20% this year
for the Ravenswood District. However, as you can see from the chart on
revenue per student, the property values in the Ravenswood district
would have to increase 500% to reach the state LCFF guarantee. This
years 20% increase in revenue will only reduce the money the state sends
to Ravenswood to reach the LCFF level. There will be no increase in
revenue to Ravenswood from the 20% increase in property values, just a
saving in State spending.

The only approach to reducing educational inequality in the near term is
through a regional authority that can act over and above the current
method of funding education in California.

Respectively yours......Jay Siegel

Received on Thu Aug 25 2016 - 13:10:33 PDT

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