SAMPLE LETTER TO THE EDITOR: (While most newspapers prefer letters with fewer
than 250 words, please remember to check your local paper for word-count guidelines.
And remember: the more personalized the letter, the more likely it is to get printed in
your local newspaper. Please only use this sample as a guide, and write a letter in your
own words -- from the heart!)
Governor Schwarzenegger’s proposed budget cuts hurt those who can afford it least:
California’s children. His “cuts-only” approach to the state budget is short-sighted and
devastating to our families and our future.
Our kids didn’t create this budget crisis, and their futures shouldn’t be sacrificed
because of it.
The Governor’s budget cuts more than $4 billion from our schools, forcing school
districts to close summer school programs, after-school programs and eliminate the vital
resources that help students learn. His proposal also cuts services for abused and
neglected children and for those in foster care, impacting kids both at school and at
As a (parent/teacher/child advocate), I know first-hand how these cuts impact our kids.
(Give personal example.)
(Choose facts similar to those below:)
• California already has some of the most overcrowded classrooms and the
greatest shortages of librarians, counselors and other critical support staff in the
nation. According to Education Week, California already ranks 46th out of 50
states in per-pupil funding. The current budget keeps California at the bottom of
• The proposed cuts are the equivalent of eliminating all arts, music and career
technical education programs from our schools statewide, with room to cut even
• The Governor’s budget reduces funding for preschool and certain child care
programs by approximately $200 million, while cutting after-school programs by
about $60 million.
• The 11.4% cut to Child Welfare Services means that the abused and neglected
children who need our help the most will see significantly reduced services,
often putting them directly in harm’s way.
• The Governor’s budget would slash foster care funding by 10 percent, or $81
million, making it harder for many children to find safe, stable homes.
• The Governor’s proposal would eliminate childcare for more than 150,000 of our
state’s poorest children, forcing many low-income working parents out of work
in order to stay home and watch their children.
It’s time to tell our legislators to reject the Governor’s “cuts-only” budget and make an
investment in our children and in our state’s future.