As our communities continue to process and mobilize around the impacts of the Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, we recognize the moment we are in. We recognize that those with the financial means can support by donating to abortionfunds.org. We recognize the need for learning, allyship, and interruption by cis men (here are some resources by the National Network of Abortion Funds and Interrupting Criminalization). We recognize the need to learn from and follow the leadership of women and femmes of color who have been leading this work, especially those in the South, who have historically been at the forefront of these fights (organizations like SisterSong). In these times, as we move through our grief and rage, we must continue to take action, continue fighting for the world that our communities deserve. At Californians for Justice we are committed to advancing our vision for racially just, relationship centered schools in California.
This week, Governor Newsom and California State Legislature came to terms on the California 2022-23 budget. Big picture: what does this mean?
1) Schools continue to have more funding than ever before with a 13% increase in the LCFF funding formula and $35 billion MORE than the historic levels from last year’s budget.
2) How California spends our public dollars matters; Californians for Justice and our partners won key investments that can move us towards safe and healthy places of learning, ones that are relationship-centered, racially just, transformative schools.
3) Schools have unprecedented levels of very flexible funds and students and communities should be actively driving and included at the district/school site level to determine how these funds get invested.
$1.1 billion investment for Community Schools
Our work on school transformation through Relationship Centered Schools continues to evolve through our local organizing and community schools. We are excited to see an additional $1.1 billion investment into the California Community Schools Partnership Program (bringing the total to $4.1 billion up from just $45 million 2 years ago!). CFJ and our allies at the California Partnership for the Future of Learning advocated for and helped win the $3 billion investment last year and shaped how the program is funded. The additional investment will help more schools access funding and ensure that the voices of students and families are foundational to the program.
CFJ will also be supporting implementation as part of the lead technical assistance team, read more here.
“It’s important that students are making decisions with families, educators, and policy makers on how to use this funding for Community Schools. Black and Brown students are engaged and ready to make decisions. Students are the experts in what they need to succeed.” Diana Matias Carillo, CFJ Leader and rising 11th grader at Fremont High School in Oakland Unified.
$100 million to expand the Community Engagement Initiative
In 2018, CFJ came together with our communities and allies to create the Defend and Mend Coalition. Collectively, we organized for and helped win $13 million for the Community Engagement Initiative (CEI). This initiative focuses on building capacity and models of effective community engagement throughout the state. Based on the collective power we have built in Sacramento we fought to expand the investment by nearly 8x’s as much to $100 million through the next 5 years.
We will work to see this funding also directly support community organizations and districts to learn and put into practice effective and innovative models of community engagement, especially ones that center Black and brown students, along with aligning with community school efforts.
We’re Also Keeping An Eye On:
- Expanded Learning Opportunities Program – We support the ongoing $4.4 billion in funding, but want to see these opportunities expanded to include 7-12th grades.
- Dual Enrollment – CFJ supports the $200 million over 5 years to expand dual enrollment, and hope to see ongoing funding for the program.
- Teacher and counselor investments – We support the $184 million increase to the Teacher Residency Program, and including counselors as part of the program.
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