Economics Sore Subject for Public Schools
Two years ago, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) vowed that 2008 would be the “year of education.” He laid the groundwork by establishing a high-profile commission that urged an overhaul of the state public school system — and $10.5 billion in additional spending.
But that was before the nation dove headlong into economic crisis, and before California policymakers realized their state would be deep in the red. In late 2008, Schwarzenegger met with educators and dropped this bombshell: Schools needed to brace for cuts of more than $2 billion.
“We thought we were going to have a conversation about how to adequately fund education, [but] we're having a conversation about where else can we cut. It's the wrong conversation,” said Brian Lewis, executive director of the California Association of School Business Officials.
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