Dear Carlsbad Community,
As we approach the midpoint of this school year, I want to provide you with an update on the work of the Carlsbad Educational Foundation (CEF) and its strategic investments supporting excellence in our public schools.
As you may know, for the past several years, the foundation has been making targeted grants in three distinct areas benefiting our 11,000 students: hands-on science, district-wide music and educational innovation. Distributed across these impact areas, CEF currently funds 15 specific programs and nearly $500,000 in grants and fees to the Carlsbad Unified School District (CUSD).
While CEF is committed to maintaining these key programs on a multi-year basis, the fact is times are getting tougher in terms of public funding for our schools. Although the long-term forecast for CUSD will eventually improve, the District is currently looking at ways to address a projected deficit of $7.8M for the 2012–2013 school year. Against this magnitude of a shortfall, CEF must adapt and expand its work.
To that end, CEF has recently met with the “CUSD Parent & Community Budget Task Force,” a parent-led, grassroots group that is seeking new and innovative ways of raising revenue for our schools. While CEF continues to focus on our existing grant-making commitments, we also will be providing meeting space and infrastructure support to the Parent Task Force, offering our accounting systems for fiscal management of new funds, as well as working collaboratively on new fundraising efforts designed to produce additional revenue streams for our schools.
We know that some of the budget reduction measures currently under review at CUSD might impact the teachers, staff, and duration of the school year. Should these changes come to pass, CEF will expand its current programs, such as the Kids’ Care childcare program (K-5) and the Summer Enrich-ment Program (K-8), so they would be more widely available when CUSD students are out of school.
To keep the community abreast of these developments and CEF’s role in helping to address them, we will be launching a new blog in February. If you have any ideas or feedback you would like to share with us, we welcome your input. We appreciate the opportunity to be able to partner with you in our continuing efforts to support educational excellence in Carlsbad’s public schools.
Chief Executive Officer