January 10, 2023
Statement by Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond on Governor’s Proposed 2023–24 Education Budget
SACRAMENTO—State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond today issued the following statement in response to Governor Gavin Newsom’s proposed education budget for fiscal year 2023–24:
“The promise of education will only be fulfilled if we work together to invest in our students and our schools to build the future we want to see,” said Thurmond. “Building on last year’s record investment in education with a historic $22,893 in per-pupil funding, this year’s budget improves upon that by proposing the highest per-pupil spending for the state of California at $23,723. A record $17,519 of this total is Proposition 98 dollars, and the total is up more than $10,000 from 12 years ago.
“With this budget, California continues to improve our investments in education for our schools, our students, and our teachers.
“To deliver on the promises made, we must address the inequities that exist and close the opportunity gap. Ongoing commitments to universal meals, universal transitional kindergarten, and expanded learning opportunities for all schools remain critical areas for securing equitable opportunities for California’s students—and still more needs to be done.
“The Governor’s inclusion of $300 million in ongoing funds for the equity multiplier—rooted in the recommendations from my Black Student Achievement Task Force and Assembly Bill 2774, which I sponsored to promote programs to support the achievement of Black students—is key to this work. Through the help of a broad coalition of individuals and partners in the Legislature, including Assemblymember Akilah Weber as well as Governor Newsom, we are leading with a meaningful equity agenda, rooted in data, to address persistent opportunity gaps.
“We are also on track to increase the educator pipeline, to diversify the teaching profession and, building off the success of Senate Bill 1229 (McGuire), which led to the availability of $20,000 grants for those who want to become counselors, to recruit 10,000 new mental health practitioners to serve in high-need schools and communities with the continuation of the $500 million for the Golden State Teacher Grant Program . These grants will streamline and make the pathway to the classroom more affordable for those earning their teaching or school counselor credential.
“The California Department of Education and my Reading by Third Grade Task Force continue to work with the Administration to provide additional literacy supports for our students. Our work to provide meaningful support and interventions to ensure that all students can read at grade level will be bolstered by the additional $250 million for a second round of literacy coaches and reading specialists, as recommended by my Reading by Third Grade Task Force. When students don’t learn to read by third grade, they are at greater risk to drop out of school and end up in the criminal justice system. Together, we are working to ensure that all students can read by third grade by the year 2026.
“The California Department of Education remains committed to supporting student achievement as part of our responsibility to oversee the $8 billion Learning Recovery Block Grant. We have launched a learning acceleration webinar series as well as a chronic absenteeism webinar series to provide technical support and best practice examples for our local educational agencies as they navigate the next several years.
“The Governor’s proposals incorporate the input and advice of leading education experts to help our schools accelerate the pace of learning, prepare all students for tomorrow, and address long-standing inequities so all our students may thrive. I look forward to continuing to work with Governor Newsom, the Legislature, and our education partners to meet the goals laid out in this budget proposal.”
Find more information about Superintendent Thurmond's initiatives and priorities that transform our California K–12 public schools on the CDE Transforming Schools: Superintendent’s Initiatives web page.
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Tony Thurmond —
State Superintendent of Public Instruction
Communications Division, Room 5602, 916-319-0818, Fax 916-319-0100