There’s only one thing that will reduce class sizes, prevent teacher layoffs and bring aides back to kindergarten classes throughout La Cañada Unified School District — money. That was the predominant message of a town hall meeting Wednesday night organized by the La Cañada Flintridge Educational Foundation, which asked local school families to look deep into their hearts and pocketbooks to help make up for the nearly $5 million annually the district will lose as the result of continued spending cuts at the state level.
School board members Joel Peterson and Scott Tracy joined Supt. Jim Stratton and foundation representatives in a packed La Cañada High School auditorium to explain the current economic climate and answer previously e-mailed questions about spending cuts, taxes and what this means to parents and constituents. No live questions from parents were taken.
The seemingly scripted Q&A style discussion was a walk-up to an overall recommendation put forth by the foundation that school families contribute a total of $2,500 per year per household to allow LCUSD to return to the funding levels of 2007-2008, when the services were adequate and class sizes in key areas (grades 1-3 and freshman math and English) were kept at 20:1.