Dear Berkeley Community,
We are writing to express deep gratitude for the Berkeley community’s generosity and strong support of our public schools with the passage of Measures E, G, and H.
It is a testament to the shared values of this community that we saw such high levels of agreement (around 80%) among Berkeley voters – this community understands that in order for our students to flourish, we need to provide resources to strengthen compensation and pathways for public school educators, and also ensure that school facilities are safe, modern, and well-maintained.
There were hundreds of volunteers – parents, teachers, students, staff, alumni, friends and neighbors – who helped develop the ballot measures and get the word out to the voters about this crucial support for our schools. To quote Board Vice-President Ty Alper, who co-chaired the campaign, “at a time when state funding for public education continues to be woefully inadequate, we are proud and grateful that Berkeley stands united in supporting our public school students and educators.”
It is particularly poignant and important to have this confirmation of our community support for education at the moment that we are confronting together the challenge of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). On the day that Berkeley voters were going to the polls, our educators were talking to students about their concerns, answering their questions, putting up handwashing posters, providing extra cleaning of our common spaces, and making further plans to address the safety and well-being of our students, staff and wider community.
Thank you, Berkeley, for confirming what we have long felt to be true here – this is a community that cares deeply, pulls together, and is wholly committed to our young people – and to our shared future.
With gratitude and respect,
Brent Stephens, Ed.D.
Berkeley School Board President