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Statement by Board President Dr. Vladovic, Vice President Goldberg, Members Dr. McKenna and Schmerelson On Passage of Federal Budget (12-20-19)

“The Los Angeles’ congressional delegation approved much-needed funding in the 2020-21 federal budget for students living in poverty, English-learners and those with special needs,” Board President Dr. Richard Vladovic said. “But if we had increased federal funding, we could expand our efforts to close achievement gaps and provide all students with the quality education they deserve. 

“We are disappointed that Congress chose once again to fund independent charter schools at a level that is disproportionate to the federal investment in magnet schools,” he continued. “Los Angeles Unified’s award-winning magnets have enrolled more than 91,000 students, attracting them with themes that appeal to their individual interests while stressing academic excellence. We call on our lawmakers to recognize the value of magnets by increasing their investments in the future so that we can expand access to these successful and popular programs.”

“We should be investing more in our neighborhood public schools that meet the varying needs of our families,” Board Vice President Jackie Goldberg said. “The difference in funding levels between charters and magnets shows misguided preference for schools that undermine our public schools.”

“Public education is a public benefit and should be preserved and protected for all to access, now and in the future,” Board Member Dr. George J. McKenna III said. “This type of disproportionate funding distribution merely serves as yet another veiled strategy to undermine the value of this essential public good. We know that magnets have and continue to outperform charters academically, yet this unequal investment underscores the misguided priorities of the current administration.”

"As a district that serves over 80 percent of students eligible for resources under the Federal Title I program, the increased level of support is still woefully inadequate to provide our students the supports they deserve," Board Member Kelly Gonez said. "We need continued investments in those critical programs that help us provide a well-rounded education to all of our students."

"As we continue to fight for fair and adequate funding of public education in California, the 2020 federal budget includes $440 million for charter schools but only $107 million to support magnet schools,” Board Member Scott M. Schmerelson said. “We know that high-quality magnet schools increase educational outcomes for our students, and we urge our representatives in Congress to fund truly public magnet schools at the same level as privately operated charter schools."