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Beutner to Newsom: Don't Use Prop 98 Funds For COVID Testing In Schools

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LAUSD Superintendent Austin Beutner delivered his weekly video on Monday, Jan. 11, 2021. (Screenshot from LAUSD video)
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In his weekly video address, Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent Austin Beutner reiterated his concerns over Governor Gavin Newsom’s plan for reopening schools.

His remarks detailed objections sent to Newsom last week in a letter signed by the superintendents of seven of the state's largest school districts, including L.A. and Long Beach Unified.

Among the objections: the state’s proposal to spend Proposition 98 money allocated for instructional improvement on COVID-19 testing in schools. Beutner says that’s not what the funding is meant for.

"Every dollar of Prop 98 funds spent on public health costs is a dollar which won’t be available to be spent on students in a classroom."

The superintendents of the seven districts that signed on to the letter Newsom's plan unfairly disadvantages students in areas where the coronavirus case rate remains high.
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"The Governor’s plan does not address the disproportionate impact the virus is having on low-income communities of color," Beutner said. "It leaves the definition of a 'safe school environment' and the 'standard for reopening classrooms' up to the individual discretion of 1,037 school districts across the state, creating a patchwork of safety standards in the face of a statewide health crisis. And it reverses a statewide commitment to equity-based funding of schools."

Watch his full address:

Superintendent Update - January 11, 2021

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