California’s Budget Shortfall Could Derail Its ‘Ethnic Studies Train’
“it is extremely doubtful that the Legislature will be able to find, let alone decide to fund, a quarter billion dollars a year for ethnic studies courses”
California has some serious budget problems, and that might put a damper on some of their progressive education programs.
Halting California’s Runaway ‘Liberated’ Ethnic Studies Train
While California school districts are rushing to implement the state’s new ethnic studies “mandate,” what they do not realize is that the law requiring students to take these controversial courses faces significant funding hurdles and may well be inoperative. Those who are concerned about the rapid proliferation of antisemitic ethnic studies curricula should focus their attention on revealing this well-kept secret. Let me explain.
When California governor Gavin Newsom signed a bill mandating ethnic studies as a high school graduation requirement (AB 101) in October 2021, he was explicit about why he felt confident approving a bill that was almost identical to one he had vetoed the year before. Expressing his appreciation for augmented “guardrails” added to the bill to help ensure the courses would be “free from bias and bigotry,” Newsom singled out one guardrail in particular: “[I]t is the intent of the Legislature that local educational agencies not use portions of the first draft model curriculum that were not adopted by the Instructional Quality Commission due to concerns related to bias, bigotry, and discrimination.”…
There is, however, a way to bring this runaway train to a halt, or at least to slow it down considerably.
Fortunately, right after the “intent” guardrail was written into AB 101, the CA Legislature slipped in an “in-case-of-fire-break-glass” amendment: these provisions will become “operative only upon an appropriation of funds by the Legislature for the purposes of these amendments in the annual Budget Act or another statute.”
In other words, unless and until legislators allocate funds to cover AB 101’s costs, which the California Department of Education anticipates will be $276 million annually, its graduation requirement is not in play.
Legislators did appropriate one-time funds “to support the creation or expansion of ethnic studies course offerings,” but that appropriation, a small fraction of AB 101’s price tag, was part of a bill signed into law more than two months before the “break-glass” clause was added to AB 101, indicating that these funds were not the ones intended by legislators to serve as the trigger for operationalizing the graduation requirement. Another law paying for AB 101 would be needed to do that.
Neither the governor nor legislators have signaled that they will fund AB 101. Given California’s enormous $31.5 billion shortfall, announced in Governor Newsom’s May 12th State Budget for the upcoming fiscal year, it is extremely doubtful that the Legislature will be able to find, let alone decide to fund, a quarter billion dollars a year for ethnic studies courses that are quite likely to teach content the Legislature has explicitly rejected.
Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.
T he Brylcreem Boy does have champagne tastes on a relatively beer budget. Ethnic studies, reparations, AND this boondoggle high speed rail project are SO expensive. What’s a Regressive to do?
Run away and change his name to President.