Hundreds of parents and students in La Jolla and other San Diego neighborhoods handed out coffee and fliers on Tuesday that describe the dire state of education funding.
The morning effort was largely designed to let parents know about a 4:30 p.m. rally planned for Tuesday at Park Boulevard and Presidents Way in Balboa Park. The gatherings were part of a statewide effort called “Wake Up California.”
Since 2008-2009, education spending, which represents 40 percent of the state budget, has incurred 60 percent of the budget cuts. In 2008-2009, California ranked 44th in per pupil spending (adjusted for cost of living), according to a press release from Educate Our State, a parent-led, nonpartisan group that seeks an overhaul of the current funding system.
“California public schools are among the lowest funded in the country – it’s time to make education a priority again, not only for our children but for the future of our state,” said Fran Shimp, a parent of two La Jolla Elementary School students and a volunteer organizer of the event.
The San Diego effort involves about 13 schools, including Bird Rock, La Jolla and Torrey Pines Elementary schools along with Birney, Central, Florence, Hardy, Jerabek, Kate Sessions and McKinley elementary schools, as well as the Language Academy and Roosevelt Middle School and Hoover High.
At the same time as the San Diego rally, “Wake Up California” activities were held in Sacramento, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Redwood City, Silicon Valley and many other cities, San Jose. The afternoon rally will include speeches by parents and students, performances by a middle school choir, student dancers, a junior high cheerleading team, as well as a “surprise” flash mob dance by Eveoke Dance Theatre.
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