So Cal education, LAUSD, the Cal States and the UCs

LAUSD arts funding cut 76% in five years

arts education budget cuts

L.A. Unified

In the last five years, funding for arts education at L.A. Unified has dropped from a budgeted high of $78.6 million in 2007-8 to $18.6 million this year. The district has committed to returning funds to the 2007-8 levels.

In the last five years, funding for arts education at L.A. Unified has dropped from a budgeted high of $78.6 million to $18.6 million.

The 76 percent drop in funding equates to about $60 million, and is the result of a dramatic decrease in state support and the district's need to constrict its budget in response.

With a greater awareness for the importance of arts education today, LAUSD hasn't singled out the arts for cuts as much as before, but still cuts have happened amid the economic downturn.

"When things start getting cut, legal mandates win, and other things fall to the wayside," said L.A. Unified senior arts coordinator Steven McCarthy. He's now the only staffer of the school district's "arts education branch," which used to include about 20 people. 

On Tuesday, the L.A. Unified school board unanimously approved a measure that will make arts education a "core subject," prohibit further cuts to the arts, and ultimately restore some money to arts programs.

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$4 million fund drive puts LAUSD arts education on center stage

Arts education

Tami Abdollah/KPCC

The LA Fund for Public Education kicked off Monday a $4 million campaign — and the largest initiative in city history — to revitalize arts education at the Los Angeles Unified School District. About a dozen city buses will feature L.A.-based artist Barbara Kruger's work produced for this effort.

LA Fund for education arts

Tami Abdollah/KPCC

The LA Fund for Public Education kicked off Monday a $4 million campaign — and the largest initiative in city history — to revitalize arts education at the Los Angeles Unified School District. About a dozen city buses will feature L.A.-based artist Barbara Kruger's work produced for this effort.

LA fund for education arts

Tami Abdollah

The LA Fund for Public Education kicked off Monday a $4 million campaign — and the largest initiative in city history — to revitalize arts education at the Los Angeles Unified School District. About a dozen city buses will feature L.A.-based artist Barbara Kruger's work produced for this effort.

Arts education

Tami Abdollah/KPCC

The LA Fund for Public Education kicked off Monday a $4 million campaign — and the largest initiative in city history — to revitalize arts education at the Los Angeles Unified School District. About a dozen city buses will feature L.A.-based artist Barbara Kruger's work produced for this effort.

arts education

Tami Abdollah/KPCC

The LA Fund for Public Education kicked off Monday a $4 million campaign — and the largest initiative in city history — to revitalize arts education at the Los Angeles Unified School District. About a dozen city buses will feature L.A.-based artist Barbara Kruger's work produced for this effort.


With song, dance and star-power tweets by Justin Bieber and Ryan Seacrest, the LA Fund for Public Education launched a $4 million campaign — and the largest initiative in city history — to revitalize arts education at the Los Angeles Unified School District.

At an event at East Los Angeles Performing Arts Academy, dozens of students along with school board member Nury Martinez danced to The Black Eyed Peas' "I Gotta Feeling" and Beyonce's "Move Your Body" to celebrate the new campaign.

"Arts Matter," with CBS Outdoor as a primary sponsor, will feature the work of L.A.-based artist Barbara Kruger on about a dozen city buses and on hundreds of billboards, bus shelters, wall postings, mall media and bulletins, LA Fund officials say.

"You can go from DreamWorks to Amgen, from Boeing to Mattel, they all say their No. 1 challenge is finding creative thinkers who can problem solve and who have the capacity and desire to learn new ways of doing things in an increasingly competitive market place," said LA Fund Chair Megan Chernin.

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Breakfast in the classroom: Select LA students to receive free morning meal

A new initiative called "Food for Thought" aims to provide free school breakfasts to students at low income schools in the Los Angeles Unified School District.

The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) along with LA Fund for Public Education, is rolling out a new dining program called "Food for Thought" to provide free breakfast for students at 267 of the city's poorest schools.

There's as many as 132,000 students who do not eat breakfast each day, according to the LA Fund, and there more than 553,000 students who live in poverty throughout the LAUSD.

The new initiative is attempting to change these numbers by delivering breakfast to select schools beginning next year. Elementary school students will spend the first 10 minutes of their day eating their morning meal in the classroom, while secondary school students will follow a "Grab n' Go" model that allows them to pick up food at campus kiosks on their way to class.

The Los Angeles Times reports that the program aims to increase school breakfast consumption in the LAUSD from 29 percent to 70 percent, according to David Binkle, the district’s food services deputy director.

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