Press Release Details
Board Approves $60 Million Budget for Public Education Enrichment Fund, Largest Allocation in Fund’s 10-Year History
April 15, 2015 (San Francisco) - Last night the San Francisco Board of Education unanimously approved the largest allocation of the Public Education Enrichment Fund (PEEF) in the fund’s ten-year history.
The 2015-16 PEEF budget allocates $59.2 million for school enrichment opportunities, including the visual and performing arts, language programs, school libraries, and physical education. This represents an increase of $4.7 million over the 2014-15 school year.
“I want to thank the voters of San Francisco who made this fund possible. PEEF contributes tremendously to what our schools can do,” said Board President Emily Murase. “These allocations reflect our vision, which includes students being multilingual and having the ability to approach problems creatively.”
“What the voters of SF have made possible with this fund is incredibly important. Student learning is about educating the whole child: they have to have music and physical activities, rich literacy and math, outdoor education, and caring and supportive adults to talk to,” said Superintendent Richard A. Carranza. “Almost five years ago this district had to cut a quarter of its budget. Other school districts in California had to eliminate all enrichment programming. We are finally moving away from life support and toward revitalizing our schools.”
In March of 2004, San Francisco voters approved the ballot initiative Proposition H. The passage of Proposition H established the Public Education Enrichment Fund (PEEF) as law within the City Charter, Section 16.123.1-10. PEEF provides critical funding to improve the quality of education for the youth of San Francisco.
In November of 2014, Proposition C, the "Children and Families First" initiative was passed by a majority of voters. Passage of Prop. C guaranteed funding for PEEF and the Children and Youth Fund (formerly known as the Children's Fund) through 2041 without any increases to taxes.
Physical Education and Athletics
Because of the fund, all elementary schools now have a credentialed PE teacher working alongside and coaching elementary schoolteachers several days a week. Prior to 2004-05, there were no credentialed physical education teachers serving elementary schools. In 2015-16, PEEF will fund 44 specialists to work alongside students’ regular classroom teachers. Students in grades 6 through 12 now have access to fitness labs and curriculum that helps them develop fitness plans, as well as the ability to participate in fitness exercises and activities and assess progress toward their fitness goals.
PEEF funding has also contributed to an overall increase in the number of paid athletic coaches at SFUSD. In 2004-05, the year before PEEF funding began, SFUSD had 458 paid athletic coaches; now there are more than 600.
PEEF has funded credentialed teacher librarians, professional development, upgrades in technology, and library collections that are current, relevant, engaging, and accessible to all students. The number of full-time-equivalent credentialed teacher librarians serving school sites has more than tripled since 2004, as has the number of library books checked out by SFUSD students. The percentage of schools with a library and credentialed librarian has grown from 23 percent to 100 percent. An additional nine full-time librarians will be hired for the 2015-2016 school year.
PEEF funds social workers and nurses who provide site-based services to improve the social and emotional learning of students in kindergarten through 8th grade. Beyond that, all public high school students are served by the San Francisco Wellness Initiative, which provides free, confidential services to students, including behavioral health services, counseling, nursing services, support and empowerment groups, reproductive health services, youth leadership programs, and links to community health resources.
PEEF’s impact on student access to social workers can be seen by examining the distribution of social workers statewide. In 2012-13, nearly one in five social workers in California were employed at SFUSD, even though the number of SFUSD students is less than 1 percent of California’s public school students.
PEEF also provides equal access to information and services for parents with limited English proficiency by maintaining and expanding translation and interpretation services in Chinese and Spanish, as well as Tagalog, Russian, Vietnamese, Arabic and Samoan. Additional funding is provided for translation and interpretation services in 2015-16.
The Visual and Performing Arts
PEEF funds are used to support staffing arts programs, arts-related field trips, and professional development, and to purchase arts supplies and musical instruments. As other funding sources declined, PEEF allowed the district to increase the percentage of elementary schools staffed with a credentialed arts teacher from 40 percent to now 100 percent. Now over 70 percent of all middle and nearly half of high school students are enrolled in an arts class. This summer,SFUSDwill be piloting a PEEF-funded summer arts program for selected middle school students.
Other New and Expanding Programs and Services
In addition to these areas, PEEF will also fund:
- Increases for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) programs, including five new full-time math teachers for 8th-grade math to reduce class sizes.
- A new program to provide direct services for English Learners in middle school so that students are less likely to fall off track in high school.
- A new full-time student advisor to support African-American students.
- Support for language pathways for elementary and middle schools.
- More Peer Resources programs, which empower students to be agents of change, will be in place at seven middle schools and eight high schools.
Page updated on 04/15/15