Vote YES on Cupertino Union School District Measure A to provide increased local funding support to public schools.
Measure A asks voters in Santa Clara County to support local school funding by replacing the existing parcel tax with an increased annual parcel tax rate. If the measure is adopted, parcel owners would see an increase of $148 annually as the rate is raised from the current $250/year to the newly approved $398/year. This local funding stream will provide $14 million annually for the next 8 years to the Cupertino Union School District, and would include independent community oversight, exemptions for senior citizens, and a guarantee that all collected funds would go directly to benefit local schools. These funds will not be used to cover administrative salaries, but will be focused on retaining high-quality teachers, providing competitive compensation rates for teachers and instructors, keeping schools open, ensuring fiscal solvency across the district and supporting the social and emotional wellness of students. A similar measure was included on the March 2020 primary ballot, but failed after gaining only 60% voter approval. This measure requires a two-thirds supermajority voter approval to pass.
Why voting YES on Measure A matters:
- Cupertino Union School District currently serves 15,000 elementary and middle school students, which is down from nearly 19,000 in 2013. This steady decline in enrollment has created significant financial challenges for the district. State funding, which is allocated on a per-pupil basis, has decreased while the fixed cost of operating and maintaining school buildings has not changed. Without a change to the school funding mix, it is expected that the district will have to move forward with consolidating school buildings for low enrollment, freezing teacher salaries, and staff layoffs. Measure A will provide the district with a reliable fixed stream of annual income, allowing school leaders to strategically budget and maintain all existing school locations in the district.
- With these funds, Cupertino Union School District is planning for ambitious improvements to social and emotional learning, core academic programs, library collections, and classroom technology. To ensure that these dollars are properly allocated, the district has committed to appointing an Independent Citizens’ Oversight Committee and undergoing mandatory annual audits. None of the raised funds will be spent on district administrator salaries, but there will be an effort to make teacher and instructor salaries more competitive and to build annual increases into the compensation system. Measure A will require that the district provide taxed citizens with oversight and public accountability, and that the raised funds will be concentrated on improvements to classroom learning and student success.
- The decreases in student enrollment is partially tied to families moving out of the district over the last decade. Approving this local investment in public education could have larger community benefits, like improving and stabilizing property values over time and attracting young families to move to the area and enroll their children in the public-education system. Measure A will provide a long-term investment in local schools that will revitalize public education, and it could also have positive implications for the local economy and the housing market.
The committee in support of Measure A, Citizens for Great Cupertino District Schools, has raised more than $56,000 for the ballot initiative through both individual and organizational donors. Donations include $10,000 from Vallco Property Owner, LLC, $5,000 from SEIU Local 521 Issues PAC, and $3,000 from McKim Design Group. Measure A has also received the endorsement of several local progressive elected officials, including Assemblymembers Evan Low, Alex Lee, and Josh Becker.
There is no prominent misinformation about Measure A.