State Funding of
K-12 Education
A Panel Discussion with Candidates for the
California 19th Assembly District





Questions and Answers

The following questions from the audience have been forwarded to the candidates on Sep 19. Closely related questions were combined to shorten the task. Off-topic questions were deleted as were several questions that were addressed to a single candidate and were not easily re-worded to apply to all candidates.

The responses from the candidates are shown below each question.

  1. How do you feel about the state level of education funding per pupil? If you are not satisfied, what spending priorities or reallocations would you support to move California up from 48th in per pupil spending? What sources of information do you use to justify that view?
  2. Without increasing taxes / funding how would you restructure spending priorities to get more benefit into the classrooms ?
  3. Will you support equalizing the level of State support of Basic Aid and Revenue Limited school districts? In which direction? What kind of sympathy do you think the rest of the State Assembly has for the unique problems of funding we have in the Bay Area, including our high cost of living and the disproportionately high number of Basic Aid districts?
  4. How do you think the Legislature can provide equal funding of schools throughout CA, correcting Prop 13 funding inequities?
  5. Please comment on the Republican effort to equalize school funding during the recent budget cycle. Where would you have stood?
  6. Would you support cutting State paperwork requirements to save local district administrative costs?
  7. Could you ever see an overhaul as radical as funding education by means of income taxes rather than property taxes? A well educated public benefits ALL - not just parents or just property owners.
  8. What do you say to childless individuals who do not believe they should support public schools?
  9. Would you support exempting school districts from sales tax, as all states except CA, AZ and WA do?
  10. Would you support returning excused absences for funding with ADA as was done in the past, or funding based on enrollment rather than ADA?
  11. What measures do you feel should be used to measure teaching improvement? What incentives and rewards should the State use to help improve student learning?
  12. What ideas do you have to help protect education from skyrocketing health care costs? Along the same lines- What ideas do you have to help protect education from energy cost spikes and fluctuations?
  13. How would you propose to get input from those in the education community in your district; teachers, administrators, board members, parents and students?
  14. Do you feel that Federal categorical funding grants, such as for special ed, should be spent only for the purposes intended?
  15. What is your educational background? And have you written any publications, articles, your own works, etc.? If so, please supply titles, publishers and where they can be obtained.

Contact: Dennis Paull for more info
Last Edit September 19, 2002