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State Board of Education Will Decide How Billions Can Be Spent

The California State Capitol Building in Sacramento (file photo)
Andrew Nixon
Capital Public Radio
The California State Capitol Building in Sacramento (file photo)

The California State Board of Education will decide tomorrow how school districts can spend billions of dollars in state funding next year. From Sacramento, Katie Orr has details on what's at stake in the meeting.

The board will consider rules that dictate how school districts can spend money targeted toward low-income and non-English speaking students.

Several interest groups want the rules tightened up, to ensure the money isn’t squandered. Samantha Tran is with the advocacy group Children Now. She says some district wide spending could be good.

Tran: “You know you want to do things at scale, so those can be really powerful. The challenge is if those aren’t targeted prevention and intervention services, it could get watered down.”

Administrators prefer fewer restrictions, so they can spend the money more easily. They acknowledge that could include teacher pay raises. But Wes Smith with the Association of California School Administrators says students will still come first.

Smith: “We’ve been doing some workshops all across the state to provide our members with suggestions, tools, and what have you, so they can meet the needs at the bargaining table, while prioritizing the needs of students.”

Governor Jerry Brown is proposing a budget of about $55 billion for K-12 education in the coming year.