State to Ask Davis Schools to Return $4.5 Million?

Schools

The Davis Enterprise reported yesterday that the Davis school district could be asked to return the $4.5 million it received just last year from the state in matching funds for the construction of Montgomery Elementary.

“That’s apparently the gist of a new legal opinion from the state Attorney General’s Office, directed to members of the State Allocation Board. The school district’s appeal will be heard at a SAB meeting next Wednesday in Sacramento.If the Davis district is asked to return the money, it will effectively reverse the SAB’s decision in August 2007 to award the $4.5 million to the Davis district, following a lengthy appeal of an earlier decision by the Office of Public School Construction to deny the funds.”

Last year, the school district received the $4.5 million plus matching funds from the state after a lengthy appeals process that we have highlighted. This stems from the district back in 2001 and 2002, missing critical state deadlines and therefore becoming ineligible.

However, after a long process, the district finally received the money last year.

Bruce Colby, the current Chief Budget Officer for the District expressed his surprise to the district, noting that the state formally approved the funds and the district received the money. After that, the district considered the matter close.

Colby told the Enterprise:

“It’s unprecedented for the SAB to ask for money back after they’ve approved the money and sent the money.”

Assemblywoman Lois Wolk who was also involved in the process of recouping the matching funds was similarly baffled.

“I was very surprised by the action of the Office of Public School Construction staff to try to reverse the decision of the State Allocation Board. In 2007, the SAB decided on a 7-3 vote to support the Davis school district’s appeal for funding. Since then, the district has received the funds owed to them.

I see no reason to reopen this issue again. I will be working with the members of the State Allocation Board to ensure that the district’s funding is secure.”

Commentary:

This is a baffling decision by the state. The district has long since acknowledged the errors that led to the original loss of eligibility for the matching fund. They have implemented new fiscal policies, hired a new CBO (Mr. Colby), even hired a new Superintendent in James Hammond. They have done the due diligence to correct whatever fiscal problems existed under the previous CBO and the previous Superintendent.

What is gained now by revisiting this issue? The State Allocation Board already met and made their determination. The school district has already received the money from the state, and undoubtedly has already spent it to pay off the bonds that were used to finance the building project in lieu of matching funds.

At this point, any attempt by the state to take back that money would have to be considered punitive. What possible purpose would it serve at this point in time?

The State Allocation Board will meet next Wednesday.

Before people jump to conclusions, understand that this money is for facilities only. It cannot be used for the general fund. Therefore, this has absolutely no impact on the parcel tax. If there is a deficit as a result of this, the parcel tax money cannot be used for it. The parcel tax is explicitly allocated already. However, general fund money cannot be used for facilities and vice-versa.

“Under state law, the matching funds can only be used to fund facilities projects – such as modernization of existing school buildings, or construction of new school buildings. (The money can’t be used to pay teacher salaries.)

The Davis school district ran short on facilities funds in 2007, and borrowed money to complete construction of the new building for Martin Luther King High School, which was dedicated in November 2007. ‘Part of (the state matching funds) is to pay back the King loan,’ Colby said Tuesday.”

Also, the school district cannot pass another parcel tax in order to pay off this $4.5 million.

This needs to be very clear–the general fund and the facilities fund are completely separate and money cannot flow between the two.

The immediate concern will obviously be on the district’s part to retain the money at the hearing next week.

This is another very concerning development. There appears to be no rhyme or reason for such as decision by the state to re-open this case.

—David M. Greenwald reporting

About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

Related posts

84 Comments

  1. Anonymous

    DPD, obviously there is an undertow here of politics. Maybe there is another school district that wants the money, and that district has pull in the state office?

    Our located elected representatives should immediately get to the bottom of who is behind the AG’s memo. Something is really screwy here.

    And I hope all of our local electeds, city, DJUSD, Assembly, 2 Davis sups, and Senate attend that meeting next week and speak on the record.

  2. Anonymous

    DPD, obviously there is an undertow here of politics. Maybe there is another school district that wants the money, and that district has pull in the state office?

    Our located elected representatives should immediately get to the bottom of who is behind the AG’s memo. Something is really screwy here.

    And I hope all of our local electeds, city, DJUSD, Assembly, 2 Davis sups, and Senate attend that meeting next week and speak on the record.

  3. Anonymous

    DPD, obviously there is an undertow here of politics. Maybe there is another school district that wants the money, and that district has pull in the state office?

    Our located elected representatives should immediately get to the bottom of who is behind the AG’s memo. Something is really screwy here.

    And I hope all of our local electeds, city, DJUSD, Assembly, 2 Davis sups, and Senate attend that meeting next week and speak on the record.

  4. Anonymous

    DPD, obviously there is an undertow here of politics. Maybe there is another school district that wants the money, and that district has pull in the state office?

    Our located elected representatives should immediately get to the bottom of who is behind the AG’s memo. Something is really screwy here.

    And I hope all of our local electeds, city, DJUSD, Assembly, 2 Davis sups, and Senate attend that meeting next week and speak on the record.

  5. Anonymous

    Developers pushing to build new schools to make their product more profitable and the Board’s “limousine liberal” political response to the Davis parent majority’s demand that MY child’s interests are first at the expense of the least powerful has perhaps not gone unnoticed by AG Jerry Brown whose core beliefs spring from Jesuit liberation theology. Making the DJUSD and Board ,like Wall St., be held accountable for its lack of civic responsibility, incompetence and lack of due diligence reflects the current national voter mood, an observation that perhaps is not lost on AG Brown as he ponders running again for CA Governor.

  6. Anonymous

    Developers pushing to build new schools to make their product more profitable and the Board’s “limousine liberal” political response to the Davis parent majority’s demand that MY child’s interests are first at the expense of the least powerful has perhaps not gone unnoticed by AG Jerry Brown whose core beliefs spring from Jesuit liberation theology. Making the DJUSD and Board ,like Wall St., be held accountable for its lack of civic responsibility, incompetence and lack of due diligence reflects the current national voter mood, an observation that perhaps is not lost on AG Brown as he ponders running again for CA Governor.

  7. Anonymous

    Developers pushing to build new schools to make their product more profitable and the Board’s “limousine liberal” political response to the Davis parent majority’s demand that MY child’s interests are first at the expense of the least powerful has perhaps not gone unnoticed by AG Jerry Brown whose core beliefs spring from Jesuit liberation theology. Making the DJUSD and Board ,like Wall St., be held accountable for its lack of civic responsibility, incompetence and lack of due diligence reflects the current national voter mood, an observation that perhaps is not lost on AG Brown as he ponders running again for CA Governor.

  8. Anonymous

    Developers pushing to build new schools to make their product more profitable and the Board’s “limousine liberal” political response to the Davis parent majority’s demand that MY child’s interests are first at the expense of the least powerful has perhaps not gone unnoticed by AG Jerry Brown whose core beliefs spring from Jesuit liberation theology. Making the DJUSD and Board ,like Wall St., be held accountable for its lack of civic responsibility, incompetence and lack of due diligence reflects the current national voter mood, an observation that perhaps is not lost on AG Brown as he ponders running again for CA Governor.

  9. Anonymous

    Thanks for clarifying the parcel tax difference, DPD; l wish the Enterprise had….it left me the impression that this might be partly political to sway/frighten voters to vote for W.

  10. Anonymous

    Thanks for clarifying the parcel tax difference, DPD; l wish the Enterprise had….it left me the impression that this might be partly political to sway/frighten voters to vote for W.

  11. Anonymous

    Thanks for clarifying the parcel tax difference, DPD; l wish the Enterprise had….it left me the impression that this might be partly political to sway/frighten voters to vote for W.

  12. Anonymous

    Thanks for clarifying the parcel tax difference, DPD; l wish the Enterprise had….it left me the impression that this might be partly political to sway/frighten voters to vote for W.

  13. Anonymous

    “Developers pushing to build new schools to make their product more profitable and the Board’s “limousine liberal” political response to the Davis parent majority’s”

    Limousine liberal? That’s definitely over the top for pushing the “Davis is spoiled rich” narrative. I don’t see residents driving around Davis in limousines. Do you?

    I have seen that in Beverly Hills and Palo Alto.

    19% of students are in the free or reduced lunch program in Davis schools, for what it’s worth as an indicator of family income.

    I can think of more attractive targets if Jerry Brown wants to make his point.

  14. Anonymous

    “Developers pushing to build new schools to make their product more profitable and the Board’s “limousine liberal” political response to the Davis parent majority’s”

    Limousine liberal? That’s definitely over the top for pushing the “Davis is spoiled rich” narrative. I don’t see residents driving around Davis in limousines. Do you?

    I have seen that in Beverly Hills and Palo Alto.

    19% of students are in the free or reduced lunch program in Davis schools, for what it’s worth as an indicator of family income.

    I can think of more attractive targets if Jerry Brown wants to make his point.

  15. Anonymous

    “Developers pushing to build new schools to make their product more profitable and the Board’s “limousine liberal” political response to the Davis parent majority’s”

    Limousine liberal? That’s definitely over the top for pushing the “Davis is spoiled rich” narrative. I don’t see residents driving around Davis in limousines. Do you?

    I have seen that in Beverly Hills and Palo Alto.

    19% of students are in the free or reduced lunch program in Davis schools, for what it’s worth as an indicator of family income.

    I can think of more attractive targets if Jerry Brown wants to make his point.

  16. Anonymous

    “Developers pushing to build new schools to make their product more profitable and the Board’s “limousine liberal” political response to the Davis parent majority’s”

    Limousine liberal? That’s definitely over the top for pushing the “Davis is spoiled rich” narrative. I don’t see residents driving around Davis in limousines. Do you?

    I have seen that in Beverly Hills and Palo Alto.

    19% of students are in the free or reduced lunch program in Davis schools, for what it’s worth as an indicator of family income.

    I can think of more attractive targets if Jerry Brown wants to make his point.

  17. Rich Rifkin

    “DPD, obviously there is an undertow here of politics.”

    I doubt that, if by “politics” you mean either partisanship or some other reason for picking on Davis because it is Davis. But if you mean “politics” is driving this because we got the money a year ago because our local politicians were inordinately effective and this is a backlash against that process, then you might be onto something.

    “There were several districts that also missed the deadline, but Davis may be the only one who got its money back.”

    This, I suspect, is the salient point. If one district — ours — was perceived to have received special treatment, then the motivation for this action would be to treat all districts equally.

    Nonetheless, my gut instinct is that this will never amount to anything. The money will not be returned. Why not? Because at the state level, someone (maybe even a court?) will recognize that it is an even worse precedent to award a district this amount of money and then declare well after the fact that the money has to be returned. Even a financially responsible district — one which does not promise its employees more money than it has to spend or forgets to file its paperwork on time — could not be expected to have $4.5 million lying around a year after the state gave it that money for school construction.

  18. Rich Rifkin

    “DPD, obviously there is an undertow here of politics.”

    I doubt that, if by “politics” you mean either partisanship or some other reason for picking on Davis because it is Davis. But if you mean “politics” is driving this because we got the money a year ago because our local politicians were inordinately effective and this is a backlash against that process, then you might be onto something.

    “There were several districts that also missed the deadline, but Davis may be the only one who got its money back.”

    This, I suspect, is the salient point. If one district — ours — was perceived to have received special treatment, then the motivation for this action would be to treat all districts equally.

    Nonetheless, my gut instinct is that this will never amount to anything. The money will not be returned. Why not? Because at the state level, someone (maybe even a court?) will recognize that it is an even worse precedent to award a district this amount of money and then declare well after the fact that the money has to be returned. Even a financially responsible district — one which does not promise its employees more money than it has to spend or forgets to file its paperwork on time — could not be expected to have $4.5 million lying around a year after the state gave it that money for school construction.

  19. Rich Rifkin

    “DPD, obviously there is an undertow here of politics.”

    I doubt that, if by “politics” you mean either partisanship or some other reason for picking on Davis because it is Davis. But if you mean “politics” is driving this because we got the money a year ago because our local politicians were inordinately effective and this is a backlash against that process, then you might be onto something.

    “There were several districts that also missed the deadline, but Davis may be the only one who got its money back.”

    This, I suspect, is the salient point. If one district — ours — was perceived to have received special treatment, then the motivation for this action would be to treat all districts equally.

    Nonetheless, my gut instinct is that this will never amount to anything. The money will not be returned. Why not? Because at the state level, someone (maybe even a court?) will recognize that it is an even worse precedent to award a district this amount of money and then declare well after the fact that the money has to be returned. Even a financially responsible district — one which does not promise its employees more money than it has to spend or forgets to file its paperwork on time — could not be expected to have $4.5 million lying around a year after the state gave it that money for school construction.

  20. Rich Rifkin

    “DPD, obviously there is an undertow here of politics.”

    I doubt that, if by “politics” you mean either partisanship or some other reason for picking on Davis because it is Davis. But if you mean “politics” is driving this because we got the money a year ago because our local politicians were inordinately effective and this is a backlash against that process, then you might be onto something.

    “There were several districts that also missed the deadline, but Davis may be the only one who got its money back.”

    This, I suspect, is the salient point. If one district — ours — was perceived to have received special treatment, then the motivation for this action would be to treat all districts equally.

    Nonetheless, my gut instinct is that this will never amount to anything. The money will not be returned. Why not? Because at the state level, someone (maybe even a court?) will recognize that it is an even worse precedent to award a district this amount of money and then declare well after the fact that the money has to be returned. Even a financially responsible district — one which does not promise its employees more money than it has to spend or forgets to file its paperwork on time — could not be expected to have $4.5 million lying around a year after the state gave it that money for school construction.

  21. motivation

    If one district — ours — was perceived to have received special treatment, then the motivation for this action would be to treat all districts equally.

    Or, possibly, the motivation would be to prevent a precedent from being set so that they are not required to pay up for all the districts that missed the deadline, particularly in a tough budget year.

    Same motivation perhaps, but with emphasis on the cost rather than on an abstract principle of fairness.

  22. motivation

    If one district — ours — was perceived to have received special treatment, then the motivation for this action would be to treat all districts equally.

    Or, possibly, the motivation would be to prevent a precedent from being set so that they are not required to pay up for all the districts that missed the deadline, particularly in a tough budget year.

    Same motivation perhaps, but with emphasis on the cost rather than on an abstract principle of fairness.

  23. motivation

    If one district — ours — was perceived to have received special treatment, then the motivation for this action would be to treat all districts equally.

    Or, possibly, the motivation would be to prevent a precedent from being set so that they are not required to pay up for all the districts that missed the deadline, particularly in a tough budget year.

    Same motivation perhaps, but with emphasis on the cost rather than on an abstract principle of fairness.

  24. motivation

    If one district — ours — was perceived to have received special treatment, then the motivation for this action would be to treat all districts equally.

    Or, possibly, the motivation would be to prevent a precedent from being set so that they are not required to pay up for all the districts that missed the deadline, particularly in a tough budget year.

    Same motivation perhaps, but with emphasis on the cost rather than on an abstract principle of fairness.

  25. Jerry Brown supporter

    I seriously doubt Jerry Brown is even aware of this opinion by one of his low level attorneys. There certainly is no political upside for him supporting state bureaucrats taking money back from local schools on some paper work technicality. In fact, if someone brought it to his attention I bet he would offer a revised opinion. Where’s Dave Rosenberg when you need him????

  26. Jerry Brown supporter

    I seriously doubt Jerry Brown is even aware of this opinion by one of his low level attorneys. There certainly is no political upside for him supporting state bureaucrats taking money back from local schools on some paper work technicality. In fact, if someone brought it to his attention I bet he would offer a revised opinion. Where’s Dave Rosenberg when you need him????

  27. Jerry Brown supporter

    I seriously doubt Jerry Brown is even aware of this opinion by one of his low level attorneys. There certainly is no political upside for him supporting state bureaucrats taking money back from local schools on some paper work technicality. In fact, if someone brought it to his attention I bet he would offer a revised opinion. Where’s Dave Rosenberg when you need him????

  28. Jerry Brown supporter

    I seriously doubt Jerry Brown is even aware of this opinion by one of his low level attorneys. There certainly is no political upside for him supporting state bureaucrats taking money back from local schools on some paper work technicality. In fact, if someone brought it to his attention I bet he would offer a revised opinion. Where’s Dave Rosenberg when you need him????

  29. Anonymous

    MoonBeam Brown is famous for doing things of this type. Most of you are’nt old enough to remember what a jerk he was as governor to state employee’s.

    Where’s Dave Rosenberg when you need him? Who needs him?

  30. Anonymous

    MoonBeam Brown is famous for doing things of this type. Most of you are’nt old enough to remember what a jerk he was as governor to state employee’s.

    Where’s Dave Rosenberg when you need him? Who needs him?

  31. Anonymous

    MoonBeam Brown is famous for doing things of this type. Most of you are’nt old enough to remember what a jerk he was as governor to state employee’s.

    Where’s Dave Rosenberg when you need him? Who needs him?

  32. Anonymous

    MoonBeam Brown is famous for doing things of this type. Most of you are’nt old enough to remember what a jerk he was as governor to state employee’s.

    Where’s Dave Rosenberg when you need him? Who needs him?

  33. mike harrington

    I view many of the bad issues affecting the DJUSD and City govt as being caused by the chaos and drain on city and community resources that the Covell Village project stole from all of us during its go-go years from 2003-05 before the 60/40 knock down in Nov 05. Our local governmental bodies only have so much in time and resources to deal with issues, and that project tied up countless meetings and huge amounts of precious staff and volunteer resources.

    While most of the community was forced to fight off Covell Village, the DJUSD budget went to hell with little oversight.

    Now, CV is coming back. This time through the trojan horse of Lewis Homes at the Hunt Wesson/Cannery site. Anyone see the latest map? They even have bloody arrows pointing to how Lewis Homes is going to feed cars NORTH of the Hunt Wesson site, and EAST to Covell Village.

    (Hey, Grande Neighborhood Folks, those arrows are headed to YOUR quiet patch of heaven. Do not assume the RR tracks will save you. They wont.)

    If you support the current Lewis Homes Project, you are a lover of CV. There is no other conclusion.

    (Eileen, say it ain’t so?)

  34. mike harrington

    I view many of the bad issues affecting the DJUSD and City govt as being caused by the chaos and drain on city and community resources that the Covell Village project stole from all of us during its go-go years from 2003-05 before the 60/40 knock down in Nov 05. Our local governmental bodies only have so much in time and resources to deal with issues, and that project tied up countless meetings and huge amounts of precious staff and volunteer resources.

    While most of the community was forced to fight off Covell Village, the DJUSD budget went to hell with little oversight.

    Now, CV is coming back. This time through the trojan horse of Lewis Homes at the Hunt Wesson/Cannery site. Anyone see the latest map? They even have bloody arrows pointing to how Lewis Homes is going to feed cars NORTH of the Hunt Wesson site, and EAST to Covell Village.

    (Hey, Grande Neighborhood Folks, those arrows are headed to YOUR quiet patch of heaven. Do not assume the RR tracks will save you. They wont.)

    If you support the current Lewis Homes Project, you are a lover of CV. There is no other conclusion.

    (Eileen, say it ain’t so?)

  35. mike harrington

    I view many of the bad issues affecting the DJUSD and City govt as being caused by the chaos and drain on city and community resources that the Covell Village project stole from all of us during its go-go years from 2003-05 before the 60/40 knock down in Nov 05. Our local governmental bodies only have so much in time and resources to deal with issues, and that project tied up countless meetings and huge amounts of precious staff and volunteer resources.

    While most of the community was forced to fight off Covell Village, the DJUSD budget went to hell with little oversight.

    Now, CV is coming back. This time through the trojan horse of Lewis Homes at the Hunt Wesson/Cannery site. Anyone see the latest map? They even have bloody arrows pointing to how Lewis Homes is going to feed cars NORTH of the Hunt Wesson site, and EAST to Covell Village.

    (Hey, Grande Neighborhood Folks, those arrows are headed to YOUR quiet patch of heaven. Do not assume the RR tracks will save you. They wont.)

    If you support the current Lewis Homes Project, you are a lover of CV. There is no other conclusion.

    (Eileen, say it ain’t so?)

  36. mike harrington

    I view many of the bad issues affecting the DJUSD and City govt as being caused by the chaos and drain on city and community resources that the Covell Village project stole from all of us during its go-go years from 2003-05 before the 60/40 knock down in Nov 05. Our local governmental bodies only have so much in time and resources to deal with issues, and that project tied up countless meetings and huge amounts of precious staff and volunteer resources.

    While most of the community was forced to fight off Covell Village, the DJUSD budget went to hell with little oversight.

    Now, CV is coming back. This time through the trojan horse of Lewis Homes at the Hunt Wesson/Cannery site. Anyone see the latest map? They even have bloody arrows pointing to how Lewis Homes is going to feed cars NORTH of the Hunt Wesson site, and EAST to Covell Village.

    (Hey, Grande Neighborhood Folks, those arrows are headed to YOUR quiet patch of heaven. Do not assume the RR tracks will save you. They wont.)

    If you support the current Lewis Homes Project, you are a lover of CV. There is no other conclusion.

    (Eileen, say it ain’t so?)

  37. Rich Rifkin

    “While most of the community was forced to fight off Covell Village, the DJUSD budget went to hell with little oversight.”

    One problem with this argument is that the budget-busting increases in salaries and benefits given to teachers and staff by our school board came after Covell Village was voted on. (Never mind whether CV really seriously distracted anyone on the school board or not.)

    While it is convenient to blame the current budget deficit on the state government, the undeniable truth is that if over the last ten years or even just the last five years the annual increases in salaries in our school district had been kept to the level of CPI inflation, we would have no deficit at all.

  38. Rich Rifkin

    “While most of the community was forced to fight off Covell Village, the DJUSD budget went to hell with little oversight.”

    One problem with this argument is that the budget-busting increases in salaries and benefits given to teachers and staff by our school board came after Covell Village was voted on. (Never mind whether CV really seriously distracted anyone on the school board or not.)

    While it is convenient to blame the current budget deficit on the state government, the undeniable truth is that if over the last ten years or even just the last five years the annual increases in salaries in our school district had been kept to the level of CPI inflation, we would have no deficit at all.

  39. Rich Rifkin

    “While most of the community was forced to fight off Covell Village, the DJUSD budget went to hell with little oversight.”

    One problem with this argument is that the budget-busting increases in salaries and benefits given to teachers and staff by our school board came after Covell Village was voted on. (Never mind whether CV really seriously distracted anyone on the school board or not.)

    While it is convenient to blame the current budget deficit on the state government, the undeniable truth is that if over the last ten years or even just the last five years the annual increases in salaries in our school district had been kept to the level of CPI inflation, we would have no deficit at all.

  40. Rich Rifkin

    “While most of the community was forced to fight off Covell Village, the DJUSD budget went to hell with little oversight.”

    One problem with this argument is that the budget-busting increases in salaries and benefits given to teachers and staff by our school board came after Covell Village was voted on. (Never mind whether CV really seriously distracted anyone on the school board or not.)

    While it is convenient to blame the current budget deficit on the state government, the undeniable truth is that if over the last ten years or even just the last five years the annual increases in salaries in our school district had been kept to the level of CPI inflation, we would have no deficit at all.

  41. chuck

    “While it is convenient to blame the current budget deficit on the state government, the undeniable truth is that if over the last ten years or even just the last five years the annual increases in salaries in our school district had been kept to the level of CPI inflation, we would have no deficit at all.”

    Davis teacher salaries are roughly equivalent to the state average.

    Although you could argue that the state average is too high, housing prices in Davis are high enough that the district has to keep on pace with the state average in order to attract good teachers.

    If Davis maintain lower salaries, more teachers would be inclined to take jobs in other districts with higher salaries and cheaper housing.

    It’s a damned if you do/damned if you don’t scenario.

  42. chuck

    “While it is convenient to blame the current budget deficit on the state government, the undeniable truth is that if over the last ten years or even just the last five years the annual increases in salaries in our school district had been kept to the level of CPI inflation, we would have no deficit at all.”

    Davis teacher salaries are roughly equivalent to the state average.

    Although you could argue that the state average is too high, housing prices in Davis are high enough that the district has to keep on pace with the state average in order to attract good teachers.

    If Davis maintain lower salaries, more teachers would be inclined to take jobs in other districts with higher salaries and cheaper housing.

    It’s a damned if you do/damned if you don’t scenario.

  43. chuck

    “While it is convenient to blame the current budget deficit on the state government, the undeniable truth is that if over the last ten years or even just the last five years the annual increases in salaries in our school district had been kept to the level of CPI inflation, we would have no deficit at all.”

    Davis teacher salaries are roughly equivalent to the state average.

    Although you could argue that the state average is too high, housing prices in Davis are high enough that the district has to keep on pace with the state average in order to attract good teachers.

    If Davis maintain lower salaries, more teachers would be inclined to take jobs in other districts with higher salaries and cheaper housing.

    It’s a damned if you do/damned if you don’t scenario.

  44. chuck

    “While it is convenient to blame the current budget deficit on the state government, the undeniable truth is that if over the last ten years or even just the last five years the annual increases in salaries in our school district had been kept to the level of CPI inflation, we would have no deficit at all.”

    Davis teacher salaries are roughly equivalent to the state average.

    Although you could argue that the state average is too high, housing prices in Davis are high enough that the district has to keep on pace with the state average in order to attract good teachers.

    If Davis maintain lower salaries, more teachers would be inclined to take jobs in other districts with higher salaries and cheaper housing.

    It’s a damned if you do/damned if you don’t scenario.

  45. Rich Rifkin

    “Davis teacher salaries are roughly equivalent to the state average.”

    For what it’s worth, I am not commenting here on the total amount in benefits paid to our of teachers and staff, but rather the percentage increases in these numbers given over the recent years.

    As I have said numerous times, I favor paying good teachers more. I have a feeling we could save money on administrative expenses and pour that money into rewarding our most productive teachers. It seems to me we have a lot of administrators in our district*. Perhaps that is unavoidable, but it seems top heavy. I have a feeling that charter and private schools have less administrative overhead.

    “Although you could argue that the state average is too high, housing prices in Davis are high enough that the district has to keep on pace with the state average in order to attract good teachers.”

    I think consideration of housing costs is reasonable, insofar as how we stack up with other districts. Yet, in my opinion that comparison should be with how much it costs to rent, not how much it costs to buy. The Bureau of Labor Statistics shares this view.

    The two numbers, over time, should be related. The price of a house should be some multiple of how much it will rent for. Because the own/rent multiple grew so out of whack a few years ago, it became clear to me by 2004 that we were in a serious and unsustainable bubble, and I wrote that in my column at that time.

    ———

    * This is a list from the district’s website of its “ledership team”:

    Dr. James Q. Hammond
    Superintendent

    Dr. Clark Bryant
    Assistant Superintendent Instructional Services and Elementary Education

    Kevin French
    Associate Superintendent
    Human Resources & Secondary Education

    Bruce Colby
    Associate Superintendent
    Business Services

    Pam Mari
    Director of Student Support Services and Principal of Fairfield
    Elementary School

    Gay Bourguignon
    Co-Director of Special Education

    Mila Spengler
    Co-Director of Special Education

    Rey Reyes
    Director of Operations

    Michael Adell
    Director of Facilities

    Sandi Fowles
    Director of Fiscal Services

    Bob Kehr
    Director of Technology

    Rafaelita Curva
    Director of Student Nutrition Services

    Katherine Peter
    District Performing Arts Facilities Coordinator

    Maria Furtado-Yuen
    Director of Children’s Center

    Mel Lewis
    Coordinator of School Climate Activities

    Kitty Hudson-Cawley
    Manager of Student Achievement

    Claudia Barba
    FLAP Grant Manager

    Mary Khan
    EL Coordinator

    Deanne Quinn
    GATE Coordinator

    Sally Plicka
    BTSA Coordinator

    Starla Wierman
    BTSA Coordinator

    Dr. Deborah Kimokeo
    Prevention & Crisis Manager

    Michael Cawley
    Principal of Davis Senior
    High School

    Matt Best
    Principal of Leonardo da Vinci High School

    David Egolf
    Principal of Martin Luther King Jr. High School

    Sheila Smith
    Vice-Principal of Davis Senior High School

    Keith Wheeler
    Vice-Principal of Davis Senior High School

    Mark Dietrich
    Vice-Principal of Davis Senior High School

    Rosena Ingles
    Principal of Francis Ellen Watkins Harper Junior High School

    Matt Duffy
    Vice-Principal of Francis Ellen Watkins Harper Junior High School

    Kim Wallace
    Principal of Davis School for Independent Study/Director of Alternative Education

    Pricilla Via
    Principal of Ralph Waldo Emerson
    Junior High School

    Carolyn Kennedy
    Vice-Principal of Ralph Waldo Emerson Junior High School

    Laurel Clumpner
    Principal of Davis Adult School

    Derek Brothers
    Principal of Oliver Wendell Holmes
    Junior High School

    Kerin Kelleher
    Vice-Principal of Oliver Wendell Holmes Junior High School

    Kathy Tyzzer
    Principal of Birch Lane Elementary School

    Denise Beck
    Principal of Cesar Chavez
    Elementary School

    Heidi Perry
    Principal of Robert E. Willett
    Elementary School

    Mary Ponce
    Principal of Fred T. Korematsu
    Elementary School

    Shelly Wickwire
    Principal of Marguerite Montgomery
    Elementary School

    Dr. Ramon Cusi
    Principal of North Davis
    Elementary School

    Michelle Azevedo
    Principal of Patwin Elementary School

    Debby Brayton
    Principal of Pioneer Elementary School

    (vacant)
    Risk Management and
    Benefits Analyst

  46. Rich Rifkin

    “Davis teacher salaries are roughly equivalent to the state average.”

    For what it’s worth, I am not commenting here on the total amount in benefits paid to our of teachers and staff, but rather the percentage increases in these numbers given over the recent years.

    As I have said numerous times, I favor paying good teachers more. I have a feeling we could save money on administrative expenses and pour that money into rewarding our most productive teachers. It seems to me we have a lot of administrators in our district*. Perhaps that is unavoidable, but it seems top heavy. I have a feeling that charter and private schools have less administrative overhead.

    “Although you could argue that the state average is too high, housing prices in Davis are high enough that the district has to keep on pace with the state average in order to attract good teachers.”

    I think consideration of housing costs is reasonable, insofar as how we stack up with other districts. Yet, in my opinion that comparison should be with how much it costs to rent, not how much it costs to buy. The Bureau of Labor Statistics shares this view.

    The two numbers, over time, should be related. The price of a house should be some multiple of how much it will rent for. Because the own/rent multiple grew so out of whack a few years ago, it became clear to me by 2004 that we were in a serious and unsustainable bubble, and I wrote that in my column at that time.

    ———

    * This is a list from the district’s website of its “ledership team”:

    Dr. James Q. Hammond
    Superintendent

    Dr. Clark Bryant
    Assistant Superintendent Instructional Services and Elementary Education

    Kevin French
    Associate Superintendent
    Human Resources & Secondary Education

    Bruce Colby
    Associate Superintendent
    Business Services

    Pam Mari
    Director of Student Support Services and Principal of Fairfield
    Elementary School

    Gay Bourguignon
    Co-Director of Special Education

    Mila Spengler
    Co-Director of Special Education

    Rey Reyes
    Director of Operations

    Michael Adell
    Director of Facilities

    Sandi Fowles
    Director of Fiscal Services

    Bob Kehr
    Director of Technology

    Rafaelita Curva
    Director of Student Nutrition Services

    Katherine Peter
    District Performing Arts Facilities Coordinator

    Maria Furtado-Yuen
    Director of Children’s Center

    Mel Lewis
    Coordinator of School Climate Activities

    Kitty Hudson-Cawley
    Manager of Student Achievement

    Claudia Barba
    FLAP Grant Manager

    Mary Khan
    EL Coordinator

    Deanne Quinn
    GATE Coordinator

    Sally Plicka
    BTSA Coordinator

    Starla Wierman
    BTSA Coordinator

    Dr. Deborah Kimokeo
    Prevention & Crisis Manager

    Michael Cawley
    Principal of Davis Senior
    High School

    Matt Best
    Principal of Leonardo da Vinci High School

    David Egolf
    Principal of Martin Luther King Jr. High School

    Sheila Smith
    Vice-Principal of Davis Senior High School

    Keith Wheeler
    Vice-Principal of Davis Senior High School

    Mark Dietrich
    Vice-Principal of Davis Senior High School

    Rosena Ingles
    Principal of Francis Ellen Watkins Harper Junior High School

    Matt Duffy
    Vice-Principal of Francis Ellen Watkins Harper Junior High School

    Kim Wallace
    Principal of Davis School for Independent Study/Director of Alternative Education

    Pricilla Via
    Principal of Ralph Waldo Emerson
    Junior High School

    Carolyn Kennedy
    Vice-Principal of Ralph Waldo Emerson Junior High School

    Laurel Clumpner
    Principal of Davis Adult School

    Derek Brothers
    Principal of Oliver Wendell Holmes
    Junior High School

    Kerin Kelleher
    Vice-Principal of Oliver Wendell Holmes Junior High School

    Kathy Tyzzer
    Principal of Birch Lane Elementary School

    Denise Beck
    Principal of Cesar Chavez
    Elementary School

    Heidi Perry
    Principal of Robert E. Willett
    Elementary School

    Mary Ponce
    Principal of Fred T. Korematsu
    Elementary School

    Shelly Wickwire
    Principal of Marguerite Montgomery
    Elementary School

    Dr. Ramon Cusi
    Principal of North Davis
    Elementary School

    Michelle Azevedo
    Principal of Patwin Elementary School

    Debby Brayton
    Principal of Pioneer Elementary School

    (vacant)
    Risk Management and
    Benefits Analyst

  47. Rich Rifkin

    “Davis teacher salaries are roughly equivalent to the state average.”

    For what it’s worth, I am not commenting here on the total amount in benefits paid to our of teachers and staff, but rather the percentage increases in these numbers given over the recent years.

    As I have said numerous times, I favor paying good teachers more. I have a feeling we could save money on administrative expenses and pour that money into rewarding our most productive teachers. It seems to me we have a lot of administrators in our district*. Perhaps that is unavoidable, but it seems top heavy. I have a feeling that charter and private schools have less administrative overhead.

    “Although you could argue that the state average is too high, housing prices in Davis are high enough that the district has to keep on pace with the state average in order to attract good teachers.”

    I think consideration of housing costs is reasonable, insofar as how we stack up with other districts. Yet, in my opinion that comparison should be with how much it costs to rent, not how much it costs to buy. The Bureau of Labor Statistics shares this view.

    The two numbers, over time, should be related. The price of a house should be some multiple of how much it will rent for. Because the own/rent multiple grew so out of whack a few years ago, it became clear to me by 2004 that we were in a serious and unsustainable bubble, and I wrote that in my column at that time.

    ———

    * This is a list from the district’s website of its “ledership team”:

    Dr. James Q. Hammond
    Superintendent

    Dr. Clark Bryant
    Assistant Superintendent Instructional Services and Elementary Education

    Kevin French
    Associate Superintendent
    Human Resources & Secondary Education

    Bruce Colby
    Associate Superintendent
    Business Services

    Pam Mari
    Director of Student Support Services and Principal of Fairfield
    Elementary School

    Gay Bourguignon
    Co-Director of Special Education

    Mila Spengler
    Co-Director of Special Education

    Rey Reyes
    Director of Operations

    Michael Adell
    Director of Facilities

    Sandi Fowles
    Director of Fiscal Services

    Bob Kehr
    Director of Technology

    Rafaelita Curva
    Director of Student Nutrition Services

    Katherine Peter
    District Performing Arts Facilities Coordinator

    Maria Furtado-Yuen
    Director of Children’s Center

    Mel Lewis
    Coordinator of School Climate Activities

    Kitty Hudson-Cawley
    Manager of Student Achievement

    Claudia Barba
    FLAP Grant Manager

    Mary Khan
    EL Coordinator

    Deanne Quinn
    GATE Coordinator

    Sally Plicka
    BTSA Coordinator

    Starla Wierman
    BTSA Coordinator

    Dr. Deborah Kimokeo
    Prevention & Crisis Manager

    Michael Cawley
    Principal of Davis Senior
    High School

    Matt Best
    Principal of Leonardo da Vinci High School

    David Egolf
    Principal of Martin Luther King Jr. High School

    Sheila Smith
    Vice-Principal of Davis Senior High School

    Keith Wheeler
    Vice-Principal of Davis Senior High School

    Mark Dietrich
    Vice-Principal of Davis Senior High School

    Rosena Ingles
    Principal of Francis Ellen Watkins Harper Junior High School

    Matt Duffy
    Vice-Principal of Francis Ellen Watkins Harper Junior High School

    Kim Wallace
    Principal of Davis School for Independent Study/Director of Alternative Education

    Pricilla Via
    Principal of Ralph Waldo Emerson
    Junior High School

    Carolyn Kennedy
    Vice-Principal of Ralph Waldo Emerson Junior High School

    Laurel Clumpner
    Principal of Davis Adult School

    Derek Brothers
    Principal of Oliver Wendell Holmes
    Junior High School

    Kerin Kelleher
    Vice-Principal of Oliver Wendell Holmes Junior High School

    Kathy Tyzzer
    Principal of Birch Lane Elementary School

    Denise Beck
    Principal of Cesar Chavez
    Elementary School

    Heidi Perry
    Principal of Robert E. Willett
    Elementary School

    Mary Ponce
    Principal of Fred T. Korematsu
    Elementary School

    Shelly Wickwire
    Principal of Marguerite Montgomery
    Elementary School

    Dr. Ramon Cusi
    Principal of North Davis
    Elementary School

    Michelle Azevedo
    Principal of Patwin Elementary School

    Debby Brayton
    Principal of Pioneer Elementary School

    (vacant)
    Risk Management and
    Benefits Analyst

  48. Rich Rifkin

    “Davis teacher salaries are roughly equivalent to the state average.”

    For what it’s worth, I am not commenting here on the total amount in benefits paid to our of teachers and staff, but rather the percentage increases in these numbers given over the recent years.

    As I have said numerous times, I favor paying good teachers more. I have a feeling we could save money on administrative expenses and pour that money into rewarding our most productive teachers. It seems to me we have a lot of administrators in our district*. Perhaps that is unavoidable, but it seems top heavy. I have a feeling that charter and private schools have less administrative overhead.

    “Although you could argue that the state average is too high, housing prices in Davis are high enough that the district has to keep on pace with the state average in order to attract good teachers.”

    I think consideration of housing costs is reasonable, insofar as how we stack up with other districts. Yet, in my opinion that comparison should be with how much it costs to rent, not how much it costs to buy. The Bureau of Labor Statistics shares this view.

    The two numbers, over time, should be related. The price of a house should be some multiple of how much it will rent for. Because the own/rent multiple grew so out of whack a few years ago, it became clear to me by 2004 that we were in a serious and unsustainable bubble, and I wrote that in my column at that time.

    ———

    * This is a list from the district’s website of its “ledership team”:

    Dr. James Q. Hammond
    Superintendent

    Dr. Clark Bryant
    Assistant Superintendent Instructional Services and Elementary Education

    Kevin French
    Associate Superintendent
    Human Resources & Secondary Education

    Bruce Colby
    Associate Superintendent
    Business Services

    Pam Mari
    Director of Student Support Services and Principal of Fairfield
    Elementary School

    Gay Bourguignon
    Co-Director of Special Education

    Mila Spengler
    Co-Director of Special Education

    Rey Reyes
    Director of Operations

    Michael Adell
    Director of Facilities

    Sandi Fowles
    Director of Fiscal Services

    Bob Kehr
    Director of Technology

    Rafaelita Curva
    Director of Student Nutrition Services

    Katherine Peter
    District Performing Arts Facilities Coordinator

    Maria Furtado-Yuen
    Director of Children’s Center

    Mel Lewis
    Coordinator of School Climate Activities

    Kitty Hudson-Cawley
    Manager of Student Achievement

    Claudia Barba
    FLAP Grant Manager

    Mary Khan
    EL Coordinator

    Deanne Quinn
    GATE Coordinator

    Sally Plicka
    BTSA Coordinator

    Starla Wierman
    BTSA Coordinator

    Dr. Deborah Kimokeo
    Prevention & Crisis Manager

    Michael Cawley
    Principal of Davis Senior
    High School

    Matt Best
    Principal of Leonardo da Vinci High School

    David Egolf
    Principal of Martin Luther King Jr. High School

    Sheila Smith
    Vice-Principal of Davis Senior High School

    Keith Wheeler
    Vice-Principal of Davis Senior High School

    Mark Dietrich
    Vice-Principal of Davis Senior High School

    Rosena Ingles
    Principal of Francis Ellen Watkins Harper Junior High School

    Matt Duffy
    Vice-Principal of Francis Ellen Watkins Harper Junior High School

    Kim Wallace
    Principal of Davis School for Independent Study/Director of Alternative Education

    Pricilla Via
    Principal of Ralph Waldo Emerson
    Junior High School

    Carolyn Kennedy
    Vice-Principal of Ralph Waldo Emerson Junior High School

    Laurel Clumpner
    Principal of Davis Adult School

    Derek Brothers
    Principal of Oliver Wendell Holmes
    Junior High School

    Kerin Kelleher
    Vice-Principal of Oliver Wendell Holmes Junior High School

    Kathy Tyzzer
    Principal of Birch Lane Elementary School

    Denise Beck
    Principal of Cesar Chavez
    Elementary School

    Heidi Perry
    Principal of Robert E. Willett
    Elementary School

    Mary Ponce
    Principal of Fred T. Korematsu
    Elementary School

    Shelly Wickwire
    Principal of Marguerite Montgomery
    Elementary School

    Dr. Ramon Cusi
    Principal of North Davis
    Elementary School

    Michelle Azevedo
    Principal of Patwin Elementary School

    Debby Brayton
    Principal of Pioneer Elementary School

    (vacant)
    Risk Management and
    Benefits Analyst

  49. chuck

    “It seems to me we have a lot of administrators in our district*. Perhaps that is unavoidable, but it seems top heavy. I have a feeling that charter and private schools have less administrative overhead.”

    I do not have the data on this, but the case has been made that DJUSD has a lower ratio of admin staff compared to the state average. If this is a point you really want to make, I suggest checking in with Don Shor’s recent study of the district budget.

    The ed-data shows that DJUSD operated at a lower ratio of admin staff than county average last year, and I would expect that has only improved for this year.

    “Yet, in my opinion that comparison should be with how much it costs to rent, not how much it costs to buy.”

    Okay, but I think surveys show that it also costs more to rent in Davis than in surrounding areas.

    Regarding your list of DJUSD admin staff — I think at least one or two of those are teachers on temporary assignment, funded through short term grant money for designated assignments. It probably isn’t meaningful to include such positions in long-term budget discussion.

    There is another blogger on here who regularly suggests that we should be looking to Woodland schools for some guidance as to how to be more fiscally efficient. I think it would be interesting to see what an equivalent list of their administrative staff looks like.

    “I have a feeling that charter and private schools have less administrative overhead.”

    Comparing to private schools is not appropriate, because private schools do not have to serve all students, and do not have to meet all the government regulations that public schools do.

    I don’t know about charter schools, but I would think that charter schools actually draw upon the administrative resources of the host district. A hypothetical charter school in Davis will still have Hammond as superintendent, and his staff will be their staff, for instance. A charter school will still need some sort of administrative designee (principal?). I’m not sure where the administrative savings would come from.

    But I know there are a few charter school proponents around here who may likely jump in to comment on this.

  50. chuck

    “It seems to me we have a lot of administrators in our district*. Perhaps that is unavoidable, but it seems top heavy. I have a feeling that charter and private schools have less administrative overhead.”

    I do not have the data on this, but the case has been made that DJUSD has a lower ratio of admin staff compared to the state average. If this is a point you really want to make, I suggest checking in with Don Shor’s recent study of the district budget.

    The ed-data shows that DJUSD operated at a lower ratio of admin staff than county average last year, and I would expect that has only improved for this year.

    “Yet, in my opinion that comparison should be with how much it costs to rent, not how much it costs to buy.”

    Okay, but I think surveys show that it also costs more to rent in Davis than in surrounding areas.

    Regarding your list of DJUSD admin staff — I think at least one or two of those are teachers on temporary assignment, funded through short term grant money for designated assignments. It probably isn’t meaningful to include such positions in long-term budget discussion.

    There is another blogger on here who regularly suggests that we should be looking to Woodland schools for some guidance as to how to be more fiscally efficient. I think it would be interesting to see what an equivalent list of their administrative staff looks like.

    “I have a feeling that charter and private schools have less administrative overhead.”

    Comparing to private schools is not appropriate, because private schools do not have to serve all students, and do not have to meet all the government regulations that public schools do.

    I don’t know about charter schools, but I would think that charter schools actually draw upon the administrative resources of the host district. A hypothetical charter school in Davis will still have Hammond as superintendent, and his staff will be their staff, for instance. A charter school will still need some sort of administrative designee (principal?). I’m not sure where the administrative savings would come from.

    But I know there are a few charter school proponents around here who may likely jump in to comment on this.

  51. chuck

    “It seems to me we have a lot of administrators in our district*. Perhaps that is unavoidable, but it seems top heavy. I have a feeling that charter and private schools have less administrative overhead.”

    I do not have the data on this, but the case has been made that DJUSD has a lower ratio of admin staff compared to the state average. If this is a point you really want to make, I suggest checking in with Don Shor’s recent study of the district budget.

    The ed-data shows that DJUSD operated at a lower ratio of admin staff than county average last year, and I would expect that has only improved for this year.

    “Yet, in my opinion that comparison should be with how much it costs to rent, not how much it costs to buy.”

    Okay, but I think surveys show that it also costs more to rent in Davis than in surrounding areas.

    Regarding your list of DJUSD admin staff — I think at least one or two of those are teachers on temporary assignment, funded through short term grant money for designated assignments. It probably isn’t meaningful to include such positions in long-term budget discussion.

    There is another blogger on here who regularly suggests that we should be looking to Woodland schools for some guidance as to how to be more fiscally efficient. I think it would be interesting to see what an equivalent list of their administrative staff looks like.

    “I have a feeling that charter and private schools have less administrative overhead.”

    Comparing to private schools is not appropriate, because private schools do not have to serve all students, and do not have to meet all the government regulations that public schools do.

    I don’t know about charter schools, but I would think that charter schools actually draw upon the administrative resources of the host district. A hypothetical charter school in Davis will still have Hammond as superintendent, and his staff will be their staff, for instance. A charter school will still need some sort of administrative designee (principal?). I’m not sure where the administrative savings would come from.

    But I know there are a few charter school proponents around here who may likely jump in to comment on this.

  52. chuck

    “It seems to me we have a lot of administrators in our district*. Perhaps that is unavoidable, but it seems top heavy. I have a feeling that charter and private schools have less administrative overhead.”

    I do not have the data on this, but the case has been made that DJUSD has a lower ratio of admin staff compared to the state average. If this is a point you really want to make, I suggest checking in with Don Shor’s recent study of the district budget.

    The ed-data shows that DJUSD operated at a lower ratio of admin staff than county average last year, and I would expect that has only improved for this year.

    “Yet, in my opinion that comparison should be with how much it costs to rent, not how much it costs to buy.”

    Okay, but I think surveys show that it also costs more to rent in Davis than in surrounding areas.

    Regarding your list of DJUSD admin staff — I think at least one or two of those are teachers on temporary assignment, funded through short term grant money for designated assignments. It probably isn’t meaningful to include such positions in long-term budget discussion.

    There is another blogger on here who regularly suggests that we should be looking to Woodland schools for some guidance as to how to be more fiscally efficient. I think it would be interesting to see what an equivalent list of their administrative staff looks like.

    “I have a feeling that charter and private schools have less administrative overhead.”

    Comparing to private schools is not appropriate, because private schools do not have to serve all students, and do not have to meet all the government regulations that public schools do.

    I don’t know about charter schools, but I would think that charter schools actually draw upon the administrative resources of the host district. A hypothetical charter school in Davis will still have Hammond as superintendent, and his staff will be their staff, for instance. A charter school will still need some sort of administrative designee (principal?). I’m not sure where the administrative savings would come from.

    But I know there are a few charter school proponents around here who may likely jump in to comment on this.

  53. David M. Greenwald

    That is correct, we do have a lower than average administration rate, and we let go our assistant superintendent and one of their top aids. We are not re-filling those slots.

  54. David M. Greenwald

    That is correct, we do have a lower than average administration rate, and we let go our assistant superintendent and one of their top aids. We are not re-filling those slots.

  55. David M. Greenwald

    That is correct, we do have a lower than average administration rate, and we let go our assistant superintendent and one of their top aids. We are not re-filling those slots.

  56. David M. Greenwald

    That is correct, we do have a lower than average administration rate, and we let go our assistant superintendent and one of their top aids. We are not re-filling those slots.

  57. Rich Rifkin

    “Comparing to private schools is not appropriate, because private schools do not have to serve all students, and do not have to meet all the government regulations that public schools do.”

    Insofar as government regulations cost money and add to overhead, that was the very reason I think we should look at what private schools are doing in this regard as a model. That is, the public school system writ large could learn from them, by having less bureaucracy and less overhead.

    As far as charter schools go, I think they can be much more efficient than traditional public schools and can put much more money in the classroom, as opposed to putting money into admin.

    I recently read about a new charter school in New York, which by design is paying much lower salaries to its principal, giving the principal no extra staff and not employing any kind of paraeducation professionals, so that it can pay much higher salaries to its teachers.

    In that charter school, the teachers are being paid twice what other NYC public school teachers make, despite the fact that the budget per child is the same as in all other public schools of the same grade levels.

    “The school, which will run from fifth to eighth grades, is promising to pay teachers $125,000, plus a potential bonus based on schoolwide performance. That is nearly twice as much as the average New York City public school teacher earns, roughly two and a half times the national average teacher salary and higher than the base salary of all but the most senior teachers in the most generous districts nationwide.”

    Also, this charter school is not just taking all comers, it is openly recruiting children from low socio-economic backgrounds:

    “The school will open with seven teachers and 120 students, most of them from low-income Hispanic families. At full capacity, it will have 28 teachers and 480 students. It will have no assistant principals, and only one or two social workers. Its classes will have 30 students. In an inversion of the traditional school hierarchy that is raising eyebrows among school administrators, the principal will start off earning just $90,000.”

  58. Rich Rifkin

    “Comparing to private schools is not appropriate, because private schools do not have to serve all students, and do not have to meet all the government regulations that public schools do.”

    Insofar as government regulations cost money and add to overhead, that was the very reason I think we should look at what private schools are doing in this regard as a model. That is, the public school system writ large could learn from them, by having less bureaucracy and less overhead.

    As far as charter schools go, I think they can be much more efficient than traditional public schools and can put much more money in the classroom, as opposed to putting money into admin.

    I recently read about a new charter school in New York, which by design is paying much lower salaries to its principal, giving the principal no extra staff and not employing any kind of paraeducation professionals, so that it can pay much higher salaries to its teachers.

    In that charter school, the teachers are being paid twice what other NYC public school teachers make, despite the fact that the budget per child is the same as in all other public schools of the same grade levels.

    “The school, which will run from fifth to eighth grades, is promising to pay teachers $125,000, plus a potential bonus based on schoolwide performance. That is nearly twice as much as the average New York City public school teacher earns, roughly two and a half times the national average teacher salary and higher than the base salary of all but the most senior teachers in the most generous districts nationwide.”

    Also, this charter school is not just taking all comers, it is openly recruiting children from low socio-economic backgrounds:

    “The school will open with seven teachers and 120 students, most of them from low-income Hispanic families. At full capacity, it will have 28 teachers and 480 students. It will have no assistant principals, and only one or two social workers. Its classes will have 30 students. In an inversion of the traditional school hierarchy that is raising eyebrows among school administrators, the principal will start off earning just $90,000.”

  59. Rich Rifkin

    “Comparing to private schools is not appropriate, because private schools do not have to serve all students, and do not have to meet all the government regulations that public schools do.”

    Insofar as government regulations cost money and add to overhead, that was the very reason I think we should look at what private schools are doing in this regard as a model. That is, the public school system writ large could learn from them, by having less bureaucracy and less overhead.

    As far as charter schools go, I think they can be much more efficient than traditional public schools and can put much more money in the classroom, as opposed to putting money into admin.

    I recently read about a new charter school in New York, which by design is paying much lower salaries to its principal, giving the principal no extra staff and not employing any kind of paraeducation professionals, so that it can pay much higher salaries to its teachers.

    In that charter school, the teachers are being paid twice what other NYC public school teachers make, despite the fact that the budget per child is the same as in all other public schools of the same grade levels.

    “The school, which will run from fifth to eighth grades, is promising to pay teachers $125,000, plus a potential bonus based on schoolwide performance. That is nearly twice as much as the average New York City public school teacher earns, roughly two and a half times the national average teacher salary and higher than the base salary of all but the most senior teachers in the most generous districts nationwide.”

    Also, this charter school is not just taking all comers, it is openly recruiting children from low socio-economic backgrounds:

    “The school will open with seven teachers and 120 students, most of them from low-income Hispanic families. At full capacity, it will have 28 teachers and 480 students. It will have no assistant principals, and only one or two social workers. Its classes will have 30 students. In an inversion of the traditional school hierarchy that is raising eyebrows among school administrators, the principal will start off earning just $90,000.”

  60. Rich Rifkin

    “Comparing to private schools is not appropriate, because private schools do not have to serve all students, and do not have to meet all the government regulations that public schools do.”

    Insofar as government regulations cost money and add to overhead, that was the very reason I think we should look at what private schools are doing in this regard as a model. That is, the public school system writ large could learn from them, by having less bureaucracy and less overhead.

    As far as charter schools go, I think they can be much more efficient than traditional public schools and can put much more money in the classroom, as opposed to putting money into admin.

    I recently read about a new charter school in New York, which by design is paying much lower salaries to its principal, giving the principal no extra staff and not employing any kind of paraeducation professionals, so that it can pay much higher salaries to its teachers.

    In that charter school, the teachers are being paid twice what other NYC public school teachers make, despite the fact that the budget per child is the same as in all other public schools of the same grade levels.

    “The school, which will run from fifth to eighth grades, is promising to pay teachers $125,000, plus a potential bonus based on schoolwide performance. That is nearly twice as much as the average New York City public school teacher earns, roughly two and a half times the national average teacher salary and higher than the base salary of all but the most senior teachers in the most generous districts nationwide.”

    Also, this charter school is not just taking all comers, it is openly recruiting children from low socio-economic backgrounds:

    “The school will open with seven teachers and 120 students, most of them from low-income Hispanic families. At full capacity, it will have 28 teachers and 480 students. It will have no assistant principals, and only one or two social workers. Its classes will have 30 students. In an inversion of the traditional school hierarchy that is raising eyebrows among school administrators, the principal will start off earning just $90,000.”

  61. Rich Rifkin

    It might not be possible in Davis to replicate what that one charter school in NYC is doing. However, just for comparison sake, in 2006-07, we had an average daily attendance of 8,647 students. Divided by 30, that amounts to 288.23 classrooms. Our total government funds that school year was $103,585,762. From that, you have to subtract $28,105,251, which was spent on debt service, and $3,971,369, which was spent on capital projects. Thus, the amount available for education was $71,509,142.

    If you divide $71,509,142 by 288.23, you get $248,094.63 per classroom. In 2006-07 our average teacher was paid $63,378. (That comes from Ed Data — I don’t know if it includes benefits and load.) As such, of every four dollars which could go into paying teachers, they are getting $1 in the DJUSD.

    That number may not be low for California. But compared with that charter school in New York, it is.

    Obviously, we cannot put all of the $248,094.63 into teacher salaries. Some has to go to admin, maintenance, utilities, etc.

    But I suspect that if we looked to better models — instead of just doing what other similar California districts are doing — we might be able to afford better teacher pay without raising taxes.

  62. Rich Rifkin

    It might not be possible in Davis to replicate what that one charter school in NYC is doing. However, just for comparison sake, in 2006-07, we had an average daily attendance of 8,647 students. Divided by 30, that amounts to 288.23 classrooms. Our total government funds that school year was $103,585,762. From that, you have to subtract $28,105,251, which was spent on debt service, and $3,971,369, which was spent on capital projects. Thus, the amount available for education was $71,509,142.

    If you divide $71,509,142 by 288.23, you get $248,094.63 per classroom. In 2006-07 our average teacher was paid $63,378. (That comes from Ed Data — I don’t know if it includes benefits and load.) As such, of every four dollars which could go into paying teachers, they are getting $1 in the DJUSD.

    That number may not be low for California. But compared with that charter school in New York, it is.

    Obviously, we cannot put all of the $248,094.63 into teacher salaries. Some has to go to admin, maintenance, utilities, etc.

    But I suspect that if we looked to better models — instead of just doing what other similar California districts are doing — we might be able to afford better teacher pay without raising taxes.

  63. Rich Rifkin

    It might not be possible in Davis to replicate what that one charter school in NYC is doing. However, just for comparison sake, in 2006-07, we had an average daily attendance of 8,647 students. Divided by 30, that amounts to 288.23 classrooms. Our total government funds that school year was $103,585,762. From that, you have to subtract $28,105,251, which was spent on debt service, and $3,971,369, which was spent on capital projects. Thus, the amount available for education was $71,509,142.

    If you divide $71,509,142 by 288.23, you get $248,094.63 per classroom. In 2006-07 our average teacher was paid $63,378. (That comes from Ed Data — I don’t know if it includes benefits and load.) As such, of every four dollars which could go into paying teachers, they are getting $1 in the DJUSD.

    That number may not be low for California. But compared with that charter school in New York, it is.

    Obviously, we cannot put all of the $248,094.63 into teacher salaries. Some has to go to admin, maintenance, utilities, etc.

    But I suspect that if we looked to better models — instead of just doing what other similar California districts are doing — we might be able to afford better teacher pay without raising taxes.

  64. Rich Rifkin

    It might not be possible in Davis to replicate what that one charter school in NYC is doing. However, just for comparison sake, in 2006-07, we had an average daily attendance of 8,647 students. Divided by 30, that amounts to 288.23 classrooms. Our total government funds that school year was $103,585,762. From that, you have to subtract $28,105,251, which was spent on debt service, and $3,971,369, which was spent on capital projects. Thus, the amount available for education was $71,509,142.

    If you divide $71,509,142 by 288.23, you get $248,094.63 per classroom. In 2006-07 our average teacher was paid $63,378. (That comes from Ed Data — I don’t know if it includes benefits and load.) As such, of every four dollars which could go into paying teachers, they are getting $1 in the DJUSD.

    That number may not be low for California. But compared with that charter school in New York, it is.

    Obviously, we cannot put all of the $248,094.63 into teacher salaries. Some has to go to admin, maintenance, utilities, etc.

    But I suspect that if we looked to better models — instead of just doing what other similar California districts are doing — we might be able to afford better teacher pay without raising taxes.

  65. god bless the public schools

    “Insofar as government regulations cost money and add to overhead, that was the very reason I think we should look at what private schools are doing in this regard as a model. That is, the public school system writ large could learn from them, by having less bureaucracy and less overhead.”

    Private schools can pick and choose whom to admit. And of course not everyone will be able to afford private schools.

    Public schools have to be able to serve just about every learning disability out there. They have to accomodate English language learners. Serve at risk kids. The student diversity is much wider in a number of ways. They also have to run a school lunch program.

    Plus, public schools always have the liability of being answerable to and accountable to the taxpayers. That means producing records and data for the public so that citizens like you can scrutinize how your taxes are being spent. Private schools do not have that burden.

    If there is a private school that has to satisfy requirements like that, then please, let’s look at it as a model.

    I want to be open-minded, but I’m skeptical that such a school exists.

  66. god bless the public schools

    “Insofar as government regulations cost money and add to overhead, that was the very reason I think we should look at what private schools are doing in this regard as a model. That is, the public school system writ large could learn from them, by having less bureaucracy and less overhead.”

    Private schools can pick and choose whom to admit. And of course not everyone will be able to afford private schools.

    Public schools have to be able to serve just about every learning disability out there. They have to accomodate English language learners. Serve at risk kids. The student diversity is much wider in a number of ways. They also have to run a school lunch program.

    Plus, public schools always have the liability of being answerable to and accountable to the taxpayers. That means producing records and data for the public so that citizens like you can scrutinize how your taxes are being spent. Private schools do not have that burden.

    If there is a private school that has to satisfy requirements like that, then please, let’s look at it as a model.

    I want to be open-minded, but I’m skeptical that such a school exists.

  67. god bless the public schools

    “Insofar as government regulations cost money and add to overhead, that was the very reason I think we should look at what private schools are doing in this regard as a model. That is, the public school system writ large could learn from them, by having less bureaucracy and less overhead.”

    Private schools can pick and choose whom to admit. And of course not everyone will be able to afford private schools.

    Public schools have to be able to serve just about every learning disability out there. They have to accomodate English language learners. Serve at risk kids. The student diversity is much wider in a number of ways. They also have to run a school lunch program.

    Plus, public schools always have the liability of being answerable to and accountable to the taxpayers. That means producing records and data for the public so that citizens like you can scrutinize how your taxes are being spent. Private schools do not have that burden.

    If there is a private school that has to satisfy requirements like that, then please, let’s look at it as a model.

    I want to be open-minded, but I’m skeptical that such a school exists.

  68. god bless the public schools

    “Insofar as government regulations cost money and add to overhead, that was the very reason I think we should look at what private schools are doing in this regard as a model. That is, the public school system writ large could learn from them, by having less bureaucracy and less overhead.”

    Private schools can pick and choose whom to admit. And of course not everyone will be able to afford private schools.

    Public schools have to be able to serve just about every learning disability out there. They have to accomodate English language learners. Serve at risk kids. The student diversity is much wider in a number of ways. They also have to run a school lunch program.

    Plus, public schools always have the liability of being answerable to and accountable to the taxpayers. That means producing records and data for the public so that citizens like you can scrutinize how your taxes are being spent. Private schools do not have that burden.

    If there is a private school that has to satisfy requirements like that, then please, let’s look at it as a model.

    I want to be open-minded, but I’m skeptical that such a school exists.

Leave a Reply

X Close

Newsletter Sign-Up

X Close

Monthly Subscriber Sign-Up

Enter the maximum amount you want to pay each month
$ USD
Sign up for