Monday, December 07, 2009

Funding California education

Joint Legislative Committee on the Master Plan . Dec.7,2009.

Education basics:
Since  1990, the legislature and the state funding have failed to adequately fund k-12 education.  For evidence, see the Williams case.   The legislature and the governor have failed.
The just published paper by PPIC notes that 40% of the  California jobs will require a college education by 2020.  We are not preparing these future professionals.
Since 1990 the legislature and the governor have failed to fund higher education. The legislature failed –even before the current economic crisis.
Since the economic crisis of 2008/2009,  the economic crisis of k-12 education and higher education has accelerated.  This crisis was created by finance capital and banking, ie. Chase Banks, Bank of America, and others.   Finance capital produced a $16 trillion bailout of the financial industry, the doubling of America’s unemployment rate and the loss of 2 million manufacturing jobs in 2008.
See Capitalism: A Love Story below.

Students are  now required to  pay a 30% tuition increase, over 100% increase in 5 years. It is more difficult to get a job.   A secure job.  In this crisis  vastly more wealth has been destroyed than in a normal  recession.  We are all paying for this larceny.

If you go down the street and rob a 7/11 store, you will get 5-7 years in prison.
The major bankers, finance capitalists in the U.S. just robbed the bank – and the federal treasury.  They took hundreds of billions of dollars.     Goldman Sachs alone took $10 Billion.  For this, for example,  Ken Lewis of Bank of America received an 81 million dollar pension.

A radical improvement of both k -12  and higher education is required to have a positive economic future for the state. At present California is not producing the educated professionals needed to make the state professional.  Last year the state spent more money on prisons than on higher education.
The basic problem is lack of public investment.  California is in danger of losing quality human capital. The economic future is at stake.
In the 60’s and the 70’s California investment in k-12 and higher education.  Since 2000 , this investment has been abandoned (even before the economic crisis).  Quality higher education is currently being destroyed.   California is funding its schools at a level similar to Louisiana, Alabama, and Mississippi. The consequences will be an economy like Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama.  These are some of the consequences of the economic crisis and  the actions of the legislature and the administration.
See post on Water Bonds.

Duane Campbell
Professor (Emeritus)
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