By Tim Hunt
Is Ro Khanna running for the right office?Uploaded: May 19, 2016
Maybe it just runs in the DNA of Democrats, but why do Congressional candidates focus some of their campaigns on k-12 education?
Education is a state and local function--not a federal one. Since the feds got involved, they have forced lots of mandates on local schools. The transgender bathrooms is just the latest.
Take the campaign, for instance, of Ro Khanna who is in his second run to try and unseat long-time South Bay Congressman Mike Honda. Honda won two years ago with heavy backing from his allies in the labor unions. Ro had considered running against Congressman Eric Swalwell of Dublin before switching his attention to Honda.
One of Khanna’s latest missives concerns California per-student spending, which he puts at $9,200. The governor’s current budget revise calls for $71.9 billion in spending for kindergarten through community college education—an increase of 52 percent since the post-recession low. That means $3,600 more per student or about $10,600 per student.
It would be fair to ask how well the educational institutions are doing with that hefty additional funding or do student achievement and SAT scores still directly track socio-economic status. It does not in high-achieving schools such as Marilyn Avenue elementary in Livermore, but sadly, most public schools in tough areas, are failing the students.
Gov. Brown made a key adjustment in funding a couple of years ago to supplement funding for schools dealing with challenging student populations (low income or learning English). The jury is frankly still out, but the union-dominated large districts have yet to show much progress.
Please note: none of this has anything to do with Congress. Maybe Ro is running for the wrong office. If he wants to effect school funding, he should be in Sacramento, not Washington D.C.
It’s a shame that President Ronald Reagan was unable to eliminate the federal Education Dept. That would have been such an excellent step for the country.
PeopleSoft and Workday co-founder Dave Duffield has long supported programs for dogs and cats. According to a report in the San Francisco Business Times, he will take that to a new level this year.
The real estate agent marketing his Alamo estate (Fieldhaven) has listed it for $39 million with the proceeds going to the non-profit Duffield founded, Maddie’s Fund. It is the most expensive home ever listed in the East Bay and covers 22 acres with a 20,647-square-foot main house that was finished three years ago. There’s a separate two-bedroom guest house as well as a one-bedroom loft above the garage.