SANTA MONICA—The Board of Education held their first public meeting on Tuesday, November 19 to discuss the upcoming implementation of a new state law that radically changes how California schools are funded.
The special meeting of the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District (SMMUSD) was a workshop session for stakeholder groups and the Board of Education to learn about the state’s new K-12 funding system called the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF).
The Vice President of School Services of California, Inc. presented slides summarizing the main points of the LCFF and answered questions from faculty, principals, parents and committee members at the meeting.
The LCFF was passed in the 2013 State Budget due to inefficiencies in the old funding system that was creating students achievement gaps between poor and non-poor and among various ethnic groups, the California School Boards Association’s website states. The new school finance system now provides supplemental funding and concentration grants for disadvantaged students and gives school districts and their communities greater control at the local level to allocate resources as deemed fit.
The workshop presentation compared the state’s old “Compliance Model” finance system to the new “Empowerment Model” system that focuses on student achievement through community involvement and locally set policies, instead of dictating policy based upon audits, compliance reviews and school site performances.
As part of the LCFF, all school districts are “required to develop, adopt, and annually update a three-year Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP), beginning on July 1, 2014,” the California Board of Education’s website states. During this transition period, the State Board of Education advises school districts and their stakeholders begin collaborating now on how state goals delineated in the LCFF will be reached.
For more information regarding the LCFF/LCAP go to:http://www.cde.ca.gov/fg/aa/lc/lcffoverview.asp.