Weekly roundup: Gov. Brown’s new budget forecast, U.S. News’ Best High Schools, homeless education, and more

Gov. Jerry Brown’s latest budget proposal is forecasting a $8.8 billion surplus for next year, about $3 billion more than what was projected in January.

Brown unveiled his new 2018-19 budget proposal on Friday. This newest version increases total general fund spending to $137.6 billion,  including $78.4 billion for K-12 schools and community colleges.

TypewriterMost of the additional $3 billion in extra funds announced Friday are slated to go toward infrastructure improvements, mental health costs and homelessness initiatives, the governor said.

Proposed spending for education remains largely unchanged compared to Brown’s initial budget proposal released in January, which provided an extra $2.6 billion for schools above the previous year’s total.

However, Friday’s budget proposal does include some extra cash for a handful of new education-related initiatives. They include $27.3 million to convert the English Language Proficiency Assessment for California (ELPAC) from a paper-based test to a computer-based exam, and an increase of $11.8 million in one-time funds to improve early math resources, including professional learning and coaching for educators, as well as boosting math learning opportunities for pre-K-through-grade-three children.

The Sacramento Bee and the Los Angeles Times have more analysis of the governor’s latest spending plan.

And here are some other education stories from the week ending May 11.

  • Orange County students will exhibit more than 200 STEM-based designs showcasing creativity and innovation at the ocMaker Challenge, which will take place Friday and Saturday at Chapman University’s Hutton Sports Center.
  • After earning top honors at a state competition last month, teams from Troy High School in Fullerton and Jeffrey Trail Middle School in Irvine are headed to the Science Olympiad National Tournament at Colorado State University May 18 and 19.
  • Sixth-graders from Lord Baden-Powell Elementary School in Anaheim raised money to buy an all-terrain wheelchair for the San Gorgonio Outdoor Science School in the San Bernardino Mountains, ensuring greater access to the camp’s rugged landscape.
This is the part where we encourage you to keep up with local education news stories by bookmarking the OCDE Newsroomsubscribing for emailed updates or following us on FacebookTwitter or Instagram.