California School Boards Association Endorses Public Preschool, K-12, and College Health and Safety Bond Act of 2020
Bond measure would provide $15 billion for the renovation, modernization and construction of California public schools
SACRAMENTO, Calif., (December 6, 2019) – Consistent with its work to ensure that all students have safe, welcoming, and stimulating learning environments, the California School Boards Association is endorsing the Public Preschool, K-12, and College Health and Safety Bond Act of 2020. At CSBA’s Annual Education Conference, the association’s delegates voted to back the bond measure, which would provide $15 billion for facilities at the state’s preschools, K-12 schools, community colleges and four-year colleges and universities.
“Our members have firsthand experience with the facilities that are home to our students during the weekday and they understand how critical healthy, nurturing environments are to both student well-being and student success,” explained California School Boards Association CEO and Executive Director Vernon M. Billy. “Parents realize this as well and want their children to attend schools that are safe and equipped to prepare them for the demands of modern society and the 21st century workplace. The Public Preschool, K-12, and College Health and Safety Bond Act of 2020 is an investment not only in the physical environment where our students learn, work and play, but also in their future and their communities.”
The Public Preschool, K-12, and College Health and Safety Bond Act of 2020 was placed on the ballot through the passage of Assembly Bill 48 (O’Donnell), which Gov. Gavin Newsom signed in September. The measure will appear on the ballot as Proposition 13 and, if approved, the measure would secure resources for the renovation and upgrade of existing classrooms, construction of new classrooms to accommodate growth and for career technical education facilities to provide job training. The measure’s passage would inject $9 billion into the state’s PreK-12 schools, while universities, four-year colleges and community colleges would receive $2 billion, $2 billion and $2 billion respectively.
As it has done in the past, the state will match money equal to that of a bond approved by voters for a local school district or county office of education. Yet, as a result of advocacy by CSBA and other organizations, the allocation process would differ from previous school facilities bonds. New evaluation criteria mean that funds would no longer be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis. Instead, schools grappling with safety concerns like seismic risks, toxic mold or lead removal, would receive first consideration, followed by smaller districts and those with low property values that inhibit their ability to finance larger bonds.
CSBA is a nonprofit association representing nearly 1,000 PreK-12 school districts
and county offices of education throughout California.