Increased funding for the arts and music in schools qualifies for the ballot box: ConsolidationNow


Secretary of State Shirley N. Weber stated on Wednesday that a proposal to enhance funding for music and art teaching in schools for children is now eligible to appear on the ballot in November. Secretary Weber made the announcement Kansas office.

The “Arts and Music in Schools — Funding Guarantee Accountability Act” will each year allocate 1% of the local and state funding for public schools to increase funds for music and arts education for all public school students from kindergarten through the 12th grade, including those attending charter schools. This increase in funding will apply to public schools regardless of whether they are district or charter schools. The bill would not result in an increase in taxation.

Under the proposal, schools that serve pupils from low-income families would receive additional funding than they do currently. It is necessary that schools with more than 500 students spend at least 80 percent of their budget on the hire of teachers, with the remaining 20 percent going toward teaching, supplies, and educational collaborations.

An analysis that was carried out by Legislative Analyst Gabriel Petek and Keely Martin Bosler, Director of the Department of Finance, found that if the initiative is passed, it will increase the amount of money that is spent on arts education in schools to be somewhere in the range of up to one billion dollars annually beginning with the 2023-24 school year. This is according to the findings of the analysis.

Austin Beutner, who had previously served as the superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District and was the person who initially conceived up the idea, referred to it as “a passion project for me.”

Beutner said, “As a timid student starting my fourth new school in February of fifth grade, I didn’t know anyone and didn’t have any friends,” and this was the case because she was a new student each time. “A teacher of mine advised that I join his music class during lunch and learn to play the cello, which sparked a passion for music that has lasted throughout my entire life.”

In an interview with City News Service, Susan Shelley, who serves as the vice president of communications for The Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, stated that “This program is, in a sense, a return of categorical funds that were available to schools prior to the local control funding formula that was approved by the Legislature in 2013.

“At that time, art and music block grant was one of the funding sources available to schools,” remarked Shelley. “However, the categorical funding system was collapsed by the conversion to the LCFF.” “At that time, art and music block grant was one of the funding sources available to schools.” “The funds that were expressly assigned to over 50 targets were merged into a single pot, and allocation was carried out in accordance with the new methodology.” The general fund is currently experiencing a surplus that has never been seen before, yet California residents pay the highest income tax, gas tax, and sales tax rates in the whole country. It should come as no surprise that petitions seeking a redistribution of the monies into guaranteed subsidies for music education and the arts have garnered the signatures of more than 6855,000 people.”

According to Weber, the initiative required valid signatures from registered voters totaling 623,212 — which is five percent of the votes voted for governor during the main election that took place in 2018 — in order to qualify to be on the ballot. A random sampling of petition signatures can be used to assess whether or not an initiative meets the requirements for qualification if it is determined that the amount of legitimate signatures on the petition exceeds the minimum required number by more than 110 percent.

In order to be considered for qualification by random sampling, the initiative needed a minimum of 685,534 signatures that were verified and legitimate. The threshold was breached the day prior, Weber said.


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