Abandon fund plan

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To narrow the resource gap between schools, SMMUSD’s Fundraising Plan pursues a disastrous path with grave consequences. The district will lose the passionate fundraising performed by local PTAs and the dollars raised will drop by hundreds of thousands of dollars annually, resulting in the elimination of highly-valued staff and programs in local schools currently paid for by those PTAs.

The district will not come close to raising equivalent dollars and the schools which have not had great success in PTA fund-raising will still largely do without. Parents at schools which lost their fund-raising ability will enroll their children in private schools which provide the staff and programs they want for their children.

Achievement scores at local schools and districtwide will drop as large numbers of high-scoring children leave. SMMUSD will lose the state funding it currently receives for the students who will leave. Future district budgets will be further decimated as school bond measures fail as fewer voters have children in public schools and fewer passionate and influential parents advocate passage.

The district will achieve a narrowing of the resource and achievement gap by eliminating excellence at PTA-supported schools.

The District Fundraising Plan is premised on the fantasy that it can take parent-funded programs away from PTA members’ own children and then persuade those same parents to give their money to the district. Angry parents won’t give. Less-resourced schools will not be helped by preventing successful PTAs from making their local schools the best they can possibly be.

John Miller