UTLA Launches Major Ad Buy Calling on LAUSD Board of Education to Stop its Push for Student Centered Funding

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LOS ANGELES ­-- On Thursday, United Teachers Los Angeles launched a massive digital ad-buy to educate the Los Angeles community and urge the Los Angeles Unified School District’s Board of Education to vote against a pending measure that would convert the district’s budgeting to a so-called “student centered funding” model. This ad buy comes on the heels of recent reporting out of Chicago, IL, the third largest public school district in the nation, that shows the shortfalls of student centered funding during a global pandemic. 

The Board of Education will be taking a vote on whether or not to shift the district’s current budgeting model to a student-based one that would force public education funding to follow the individual student next month. This pending move will lead to school closures, while undermining  the necessary long-term investments required to ensure that every student attends a high-quality neighborhood public school: rich with well-prepared educators, well-resourced classrooms and all the necessary wraparound services to meet the social and emotional needs of students. 

“Our public schools should be hubs of the community, and places where students, their families and the neighborhood can be enriched, inspired and get the well-rounded education necessary to be productive in career, citizenship and society,” said UTLA President Cecily Myart-Cruz. “A move to student centered funding would scrap that vision of public education, and literally turn our students into blank checks for those that want to implement voucher schemes and turn public education from a public good to a private commodity.” 

The ad-buy launched on Thursday and will continue until the board votes on the proposal in the coming months. The ad-buy will be featured on multiple digital platforms, and will highlight the direct connection between the Board of Education’s move and the private money and billionaires involved with making this push, including former Education Secretary and multi-billionaire Betsy DeVos. 

“Now more than ever, our Board of Education should be working hand-in-hand with parents, students, educators and the education community to ensure a safe reopening of in-person learning and equitably investing the unprecedented funding made in our schools by the federal and state government,” said Myart-Cruz. “As a parent and educator, it is clear that our students benefit from attending high-quality neighborhood public schools. These types of schools can’t exist when you start to siphon-off desperately needed funding to those that want to privatize our schools.” 

 You can watch the ad, titled “Backpacks of Cash,” by clicking here