Bill Calling for Targeted Funding for Low-Performing Black Students Moves Forward – Los Angeles Sentinel | Los Angeles Sentinel

A bill calling for targeted funding for low-performing black students is moving forward

The bill for academic support for black students would be enacted if AB 2774 is approved by the state legislature. (Courtesy photo)

A bill that would generate more than $400 million for approximately 785 public school districts across the state to provide critically needed academic support for black students is headed to the California Senate Appropriations Committee.

Authored by Akilah Weber (D-San Diego), Assembly Bill (AB) 2774 passed the Senate Education Committee on a 7-0 vote on June 30, the last day before the Legislature’s summer recess.

“Thank you, California State Senate Committee on Education, for passing my bills,” Weber said via his Twitter account. “Our shared goals are to keep our students safe, provide opportunities for each of them to excel academically and receive the support they need to stay in school and graduate.”

Weber introduced AB 2774 in February. The bill was co-authored by Assemblyman Chris Holden (D-Pasadena), chairman of the Assembly Appropriations Committee. Both are members of the California Legislative Black Caucus.

Before the vote of the Senate Education Committee, many supporters of the bill from around the world the state gathered at the front at the “Swing Space” — temporary legislative offices while the Capitol is being renovated — to push for Gov. Gavin Newsom to sign the bill. The building is located one block south of the state Capitol.

Margaret Fortune, Fortune School of Education; Yolanda Moore, Clovis Unified Board of Education, Keshia Thomas, Fresno, Unified School District Board of Education and students from Fresno, Sacramento and Elk Grove showed up.

Additionally, Sacramento County Democratic Party Chair Tracy Stafford, Chache Wright of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People of San Bernardino, and Sacramento County Board of Education Trustees Al Brown and Bina Lefkovitiz joined AB 2774 supporters.

“There is an undeniable achievement gap when it comes to black kids, and we can’t continue to fail them,” Moore said. “Our students want to do better; they want to be held to a higher standard, but they need our focus and effort to achieve them. AB 2774 will push for sustainable, equitable and academic growth.”

AB 2774 addresses equity issues with the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF), which was created to provide additional funding for California’s neediest students.

AB 2772 would amend the definition of “unduplicated students” for the 2023–24 fiscal year to include students who are included in the lowest performing “subgroup or subgroups,” as defined in the language.

Subgroups identified as unduplicated students receiving supplemental funding include English language learners, low-income students, and foster/homeless youth.

The adjustment is based on the most recent available math or language arts scores on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress, as indicated.

“I want to specifically urge the governor to support AB 2774,” Fortune said. “Everyone would agree that there is a crisis that 67 percent of black children cannot read at grade level in our public schools. Now is the time for (Gov. Gavin Newsom) to face this problem. This group of students deserves support.”

The LCFF was enacted in 2013. Weber said more than a quarter of black students do not receive additional funding through the LCFF.

In 2019, test data showed that black students were the lowest-performing subgroup on state standardized tests, with 67 percent failing English language arts (ELA) and 79 percent failing to meet the math standard.

AB 2774 states that the subgroup identified for the 2023-2024 fiscal year based on the 2018-19 California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) results “shall be included in the number of “unduplicated” students, until her scores match or exceed the best performing subgroup (Asian American students).”

AB 2774 would require the Superintendent of Public Instruction to annually identify the lowest performing subgroup or subgroups of students and would authorize school districts and charter schools to review and revise the data they provide for students who are included in the lowest performing subgroup or subgroups. low performance.

There are nearly 310,000 black students enrolled in California public schools. Approximately 80,000 black students in the state do not receive any additional funding under the LCFF, according to data compiled by the California Department of Education.

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond supports the legislation.

“This is a state of emergency and we’ve been in a state of emergency for far too long and nothing has been done,” Thurmond said. “We cannot and will not continue to let our babies fall behind.”

Bill Calling for Targeted Funding for Low-Performing Black Students Moves Forward – Los Angeles Sentinel | Los Angeles Sentinel Source link Bill Calling for Targeted Funding for Low-Performing Black Students Moves Forward – Los Angeles Sentinel | Los Angeles Sentinel

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