Thank you for supporting #SaveFFA! We hope this information will be valuable as we fight for FFA programs and activities.
No one really knows for sure. California Department of Education (CDE) staff, including Superintendent Tom Torlakson, have not responded to any calls, letters, or emails from students, teachers, or supporters who have sent queries to his office. In addition, CDE has not responded to direct inquiries from State Legislators on this matter.
No. Federal funds provide virtually all of the funding to support Career Technical Education positions at CDE. Approximately $113 million dollars comes to California, and 15 % of those funds can be used for State Administration and Leadership. California was notified of a slight reduction in funding, which resulted in a net reduction for CDE operations of less than $70,000 - which accounts for about ½ of one position. CDE eliminated 10 positions as part of this reorganization. The reduction in Perkins allocations did not justify the severity of these cuts.
No. Ag Enrollment is at an all-time high in California. Over the past 20 years, enrollment in Ag Education has doubled. Since 2008, overall Career Technical Education (CTE) enrollment in California has also increased. According to CDE's own published enrollment report, overall CTE enrollment has jumped from 586,000 students in 2008 to over 959,000 in 20016. CTE staff and services are being eliminated just as enrollment is surging.
No. The Advisory Committee, charged with advising the Superintendent of Instruction on matters related to Ag Education, was not consulted prior to this action, and have been unsuccessful in obtaining a meeting with Superintendent Torlakson since this action occurred. He has never met with this committee during his tenure in office.
At the present time, total membership in Career Technical Student Organizations (CTSOs) stands at approximately 115,000 students statewide. Of that total, FFA accounts for nearly 90,000 of those students. FFA membership and activities simply dwarf all of the other program areas combined.
They have certainly been invited, but neither Superintendent Torlakson nor his staff have attended any statewide FFA events. Superintendent Torlakson has been extended an invitation for the past seven years, but for the past three years has not even given FFA members the courtesy of a response to those invitations.
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