I grew up in South Central Los Angeles, where local schools are severely underfunded. My parents sent me to a high school about 30 miles north in Hollywood to give me a better education. What they didn’t know was that it wasn’t just my community’s schools that lacked resources—it was nearly the entire Los Angeles Unified School District.
While attending, my high school had a nurse on-campus once a week on Wednesdays. If a student fell ill on a day there was no nurse available, they were either sent home or sent to take a nap in an empty nurse’s office. My peers and I shared textbooks in class because there weren’t enough for each student to have their own. Some of our classrooms had upwards of 45 students, with just one teacher doing their best.
Teachers often dug into their pockets to pay for their classroom’s school supplies. Our counselors were so overwhelmed and overworked that we checked in about twice a year to discuss class schedules for no more than 5-10 minutes.
This reality was unacceptable. And it continues to be a problem today. But there is a solution this November.
Voting Yes on Proposition 15, otherwise known as the Schools & Communities First Initiative, would reclaim $12B for local schools and communities across the state. It would do so by closing a tax loophole that have only benefited corporations and wealthy investors who own commercial and industrial properties across California.
For the Los Angeles Unified School District alone, students, parents, faculty and staff will reclaim $359 million if Prop. 15 passes. As we continue to battle this pandemic and economic downturn, students should have access to materials, resources, and proper health services without question.
I will be supporting Prop. 15 so that no student has to experience an education devoid of resources. Will you stand with the students of California too?
To learn how much your local school districts will receive if Proposition 15 passes, click here.
Written by Katia Ramos, Executive and Development Assistant at the Latino Community Foundation.