I strongly support Measures W and X on this Tuesday’s ballot.
These measures would assist elementary students in the Santa Barbara Unified School District and secondary students from Montecito through Goleta. The measures are backed by a wide range of individuals and groups from across the political spectrum.
These measures are a continuation and enhancement of parcel taxes that passed overwhelmingly four years ago, with more than 70 percent of the vote. But Measures W and X require a two-thirds margin to pass and continue essential funding, so every vote will be crucial.
One of the biggest advantages of parcel tax funding is providing equality in programs throughout the district. Before the parcel tax, each elementary school’s music program was dependent on the school’s ability to fundraise. Therefore, some kids in our district were denied a music program while others had a great one. Because of parcel tax funding, every elementary student now has access to a quality music program.
Whether its a vital music program in elementary schools, increased foreign language opportunities, smaller classes or revitalized vocational and career opportunities, Measures W and X will benefit all of the 16,000 students in the Santa Barbara Unified School District and their families.
Our schools have been bearing budget cuts for years now; in the past five years alone, the school district has made $20.5 million in budget cuts. Passing Measure W and X will lessen the sting of these cuts and benefit all of our students.