The quote, "what a difference a day makes,” is certainly relevant to this week’s ballot results. Going into Tuesday Election Day, all of us associated with public education – Board, staff, parents, and members of the greater San Diego community – were all anxious and uncertain as to the fate of Proposition 30, the state tax measure designed to add revenue to education, and Proposition Z, the district initiative to fund a $2.8 billion construction bond. Both of these measures passed due to the generosity and support of the community. It is with a tremendous sigh of relief and deep sense of gratitude I acknowledge this milestone occurrence.
California voter approval of Proposition 30 has a very immediate and positive impact on San Diego Unified and school districts throughout the state. The Governor will not exercise midyear trigger cuts. If that had occurred, our schools would have lost more than $40 million from the General Fund and would have furloughed staff in the process of shortening the school year by almost three weeks. This will not happen! Our staff and students will continue the planned school year without any change in schedule and build upon the academic successes of a district that now has an 808 score on the Academic Performance Index. It is our hope and expectation that Proposition 30 will begin to generate the state revenue that we will need for our 2013-14 budget to preserve the stability of our schools.
With the passage of Proposition Z, San Diego voters have given a great and generous gift to San Diego Unified and the children of San Diego. With this gift also comes great responsibility for our school district to invest these tax dollars wisely in infrastructure projects that will improve the condition of our campuses and create positive learning environments. In the years ahead, San Diego Unified will work hard to demonstrate to the community that this investment is a worthy one, an investment that will return huge dividends for our community through thousands of well-educated students who will benefit each year from the improvements funded by Proposition Z.
On behalf of the Board, staff, parents, and students, I want to express our collective appreciation to the voters for taking a stand and investing wisely in the future of our students. Thank you San Diego for supporting our schools and the children of San Diego!