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Remember our article about the increasing pressure put on parents to pay for the basics at San Diego Unified schools, most notably in affluent areas such as La Jolla?

The Wall Street Journal writes that this is a national phenomenon as numerous states trim back on school budgets.

It includes this fascinating data from California and a telling quote:

A survey by California PTA, a statewide group, of about 500 PTA presidents in the state showed that nearly two-thirds of the groups have been asked by schools this year to pitch in more money for basic supplies and programs, from pencils and books to arts programs.

“One of the things we’ve always said to our members is, ‘Your purpose is not to be a cash cow’” to cover regular school expenses, says Jan Harp Domene, president of the National Parent Teacher Association, an umbrella organization. “But we know they are playing a critical part in making sure children still have services that were once part of the budget, from music programs to adequate custodial supplies. These are not frills.”

EMILY ALPERT

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