CTA is a powerful political association whose members collect ~$70 billion per year from taxpayer spending on California’s public schools. But CTA wants more. That’s why it has been running radio ads falsely claiming that CTA’s schools are being harmed by funding for public schools not required to hire CTA members when the real cause is exploding retirement spending at CTA’s schools.

Eg, CTA’s schools in San Francisco are diverting $112 million this year from classrooms to pensions and other retirement costs for CTA members, >2x the amount provided to schools not run by CTA and >2x more than five years ago. Similar numbers apply statewide: dollars diverted to CTA’s exploding retirement costs educate zero students while dollars devoted to non-CTA schools educate ~500,000 students.

California is spending $16,000 per K-12 student this year. But only about half reaches classrooms, in large part because of retirement spending at CTA’s schools. CTA should work with school boards and legislators to change that equation.

Written by

Lecturer at Stanford University and president of Govern For California

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