We received the disheartening news that Governor Newsom signed the Omnibus Education Trailer Bill Monday evening. Below is a quick explanation from the Charter Schools Development Center, of the damage done by the legislative and gubernatorial action in the Trailer Bill:
“The growth cap, which was never discussed during the usual budget deliberations, appeared unexpectedly in the final version of K-12 education budget trailer bill (SB 89). It would peg schools’ average daily attendance (ADA) for 2020-21 at 2019-20 levels, thereby effectively capping funding. The controversial cap leaves many charter schools and some school districts in a horrible position of receiving zero funding for any additional students, many of which are already enrolled in their schools.”
The Governor released a rare signing message which included a glimmer of hope for future changes later this summer.
“While maintaining school funding at current levels allows for stability in the public education system, it does not take into account schools that had planned expansions. By not funding those expansions, families enrolled in those schools may be displaced, with impacts exacerbated by the uncertainties caused by COVID-19. I urge members of the Legislature to pursue targeted solutions to these potential disruptions, and will work with you in the coming weeks to enact them.”
We believe that this small positive comment was due to the incredible response of our families and families across the state that contacted their representatives and the Governor’s office to express concerns with the unfair funding formula the bill included. Thank you for making the calls, sending the messages, and sharing the information on social media.
We are hopeful, when the legislature reconvenes on July 13th, we can again apply pressure to change this defunding of public school choices for parents. We know that this will not be an easy task. We want to respect your time away from school and work while keeping you informed of the developing situation. We are working to develop a strategic plan that will stagger communication so that each school can target one week but maintain pressure throughout a three week period.
During that week, we encourage you to reach out to your representatives (Assembly members and Senators) and the Governor’s Office to discuss the impacts that the current language will have on schools in California. It is our hope that this schedule will allow you downtime to enjoy your summer while maintaining consistent communication with the representatives and the Governor. (Of course you are free to do more if you wish.) We will be sending out more information after July 7th.
We are continuing to enroll students throughout the summer. Students that have a completed Student Agreement are officially enrolled and their status will not be affected. Families that have submitted applications are still in process and we are doing everything possible to get as many new families enrolled as possible using one-time federal funding and reserves. Unfortunately, we will be limiting new enrollment due to this catastrophic action taken by the legislature and governor. If we can get the legislature to amend this language, it would help a minimum of 300 additional students get into our homeschooling program and 1000s of parents across the state currently seeking alternative education options.
Our School and Business Offices will be closed in observance of the 4th of July Holiday beginning July 2nd through July 7th. The business office and parent support lines will be reopening on July 8th. Any questions regarding enrollment status can be directed to our parent support line 844-283-7113 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org We appreciate your patience during this time as our hard working business, library and support staff gets a short break to spend time with their families.
We pray you and your family have a safe and wonderful holiday.
All The Best,
Jodi Jones, IEM CEO and
Cynthia Rachel, Director of Communications and Development