Stanford Studies and State Spending Issues

A Stanford University and Policy Analysis for California Education (PACE) report entitled Getting Down to Facts II comes ten years after an initial look at California’s education system taking into account all the changes over the past decade. Most newsworthy out of the report was the finance item declaring the need for a 38% increase in education funding to make California students ready for college and careers.

The dollar increase was pegged at about $25 billion, equivalent to about 19% of the state’s general fund.

An earlier study out of Stanford University by the Institute for Economic Policy Research written by former state assemblyman Joe Nation noted that government pension contributions increased 400% from 2002-3 to 2017-18 and that state and local government’s contributions to pension funds would continue to rise much faster that governments’ operation budgets squeezing core functions.

Reforming the pension system to rein in dramatic increases that are reducing funds for other government missions doesn’t mean that education funding that the PACE study experts want will be met. There is not an equivalent dollar for dollar match.

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