California needs a statewide school bond

Thursday, August 7, 2014

For years, California has had a model school facility program that is a partnership between the state, local school districts and developers to share funding for new school construction and classroom renovation.

When the voters in a local school district pass a school bond measure, the district becomes eligible to receive matching grant funds from the state. Over the last few years, the school districts of the Santa Clarita Valley have been successful in securing voter approval of bonds such as Newhall School District’s Measure E. We have planned for projects based on the possibility of state-match grants.

In Newhall, we planned conservatively so that projects which are most critical, such as replacing aging portable classrooms with permanent construction, could move forward with Measure E bond funds while expansions of project scope and projects at other sites were contingent on the receipt of state-match funds. We would like to be able to accomplish everything we planned – but only state matching funds can allow us to stretch our local dollars into other, still-needed projects.

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