Tran, Paul

Paul Tran is the Communications Director for Californians for Justice, which helps lead the Campaign for Quality Education, a statewide alliance working towards educational equity and racial justice in California public schools located in low-income, immigrant, communities of color. For more info, go to

California’s Bad Math Hurts Students of Color

By Paul Tran

And on the hundredth day, the California legislature borrowed from Peter (education) to pay Paul (pass a budget).   In the tardiest budget in state history, the public schools will be cut $3.1 billion with $1.9 billion to be deferred and repaid in 2011-2012. (More on that later).

What does a $3.1 billion cut look like?  For our student leaders at California for Justice, it looks like a computer lab where only eight of thirty computers work.  Or a set of class books that students cannot bring home to do homework.  Or a counselor you’re lucky to see once a year.

More so, what does it feel like?  “Like no one cares what happens to us,” says Jessica Solano Salazar, a student in the Oakland Unified School District.  “I want to go to college and get a good job, but how am I supposed to get there when I don’t have any guidance and support?”