Education Publications

To browse all LAO publications, visit our Publications page.



Improving Workforce Education and Training Data in California

August 18, 2016 - In 2016-17, eight state agencies are receiving more than $6 billion in state and federal funding to administer almost 30 workforce education and training programs. Historically, state and federal laws have required service providers to report different types of outcome information even for similar workforce programs, making comparing programs and assessing the overall system's performance difficult. In addition, to collect information about program participants’ longer-term outcomes, state agencies often must share and link data with one another. Currently, the state's method for linking data is inefficient and administratively burdensome. To address these concerns, we recommend the Legislature direct the California Workforce Development Board to determine a set of common outcome measures for workforce programs and require programs to collect and report data for those measures. We also recommend the Legislature replace the state’s existing method of linking data with a streamlined, systemwide method. To increase the value of workforce data, we further recommend the board present the data in a few workforce reports each year, with the intent of informing policy makers’ policy and funding decisions and improving the overall quality of the state’s workforce system.

Correction (8/18/16): CalWORKs employment and training services funding levels corrected in Figure 1.


Overview of May Revision Proposals For Higher Education

May 16, 2016 - Notable new higher education proposals in the May Revision include a $75 million increase for community college general purpose apportionments, a $26 million increase for two initiatives to improve California State University (CSU) graduation rates, and a $4 million increase to expand the University of California’s (UC’s) online A-G course offerings. We recommend adopting the proposal for community college apportionments in order to provide colleges with more flexible funding. We recommend rejecting the Governor’s proposals for UC and CSU, largely due to insufficient information about why the funding increases are needed. In this report, we also assess and make recommendations on various other higher education May Revision proposals.


The 2015-16 Budget: California Community Colleges

April 7, 2016 - Presented to Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Subcommittee No. 1 on Education


A Required Report on Student Fee Transparency and Accountability

April 6, 2016 -

Chapter 620 of 2012 (AB 970, Fong) requires the University of California (UC) and the California State University (CSU) to fulfill the following three requirements related to systemwide tuition and fee increases:

  • Tuition and Fee Policies. The legislation requires UC and CSU to develop a list of factors to consider when recommending an increase in mandatory systemwide tuition and fees for resident students.
  • Notification and Consultation Procedures. The legislation requires UC and CSU to follow prescribed public notice and student consultation procedures before adopting an increase.
  • Reporting Provisions. The legislation requires UC and CSU to provide the Legislature with annual reports on tuition and fees, financial aid, and the total cost of attendance. In addition, the legislation requires our office to report on UC’s and CSU’s compliance with Chapter 620.

As detailed below, our review found UC was not in compliance with several provisions of Chapter 620. Though the legislation deems its provisions to be required for UC, UC believes it is not legally obligated to comply because of its constitutional autonomy. We found CSU complied with all Chapter 620 provisions except for one reporting requirement.


The 2015-16 Budget: California Community Colleges

April 5, 2016 - Presented to Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 2 on Education Finance


CCC Budget and Policy Update

April 4, 2016 - Presented to: California Community College (CCC) Financial Aid Directors, April 4, 2016.


The 2015-16 Budget: CCC Workforce Education

March 29, 2016 - Presented to: Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 2 on Education Finance


The 2016-17 Budget: Assessing the Governor’s Zero-Textbook-Cost Proposal

March 14, 2016 - This brief is intended to assist the Legislature in reviewing the Governor’s proposal for zero-textbook-cost degrees. We provide background on open educational resources (OER), describe California efforts to encourage their use, and highlight zero–textbook–cost degree initiatives currently underway in other states. We then describe the Governor’s proposal and provide our associated assessment and recommendations.


The 2016-17 Budget: Higher Education Analysis

February 26, 2016 - In this report, we provide background on three key areas of higher education in California: enrollment, tuition and financial aid, and institutional performance. We then analyze specific budget proposals for the University of California, California State University, California Community Colleges, Hastings College of the Law, and California Student Aid Commission, making corresponding recommendations for the Legislature's consideration.


The 2016-17 Budget: Review of UC’s Merced Campus Expansion Proposal

February 10, 2016 - In November 2015, the Regents of the University of California (UC) approved a proposal to enter into a public–private partnership to double the physical size of the Merced campus. Under the plan, enrollment on the Merced campus would grow from 6,000 to 10,000 full–time equivalent (FTE) students by 2020. This brief is intended to assist the Legislature in reviewing this proposal. In it, we provide background on the Merced campus and the state process for approving capital outlay projects at UC, describe key aspects of the proposed project, and raise four key issues for the Legislature to consider.


Overview of Community College Basic Skills Programs

February 5, 2016 - Presented to: Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 2 on Education Finance


Overview of Tuition-Free Community College Programs

February 3, 2016 - Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Subcommittee No. 1 on Education


CCC Student Success: History, Funding, and Issues for Legislative Consideration

February 3, 2016 - Presented to: Senate Education Committee


Proposition 39 (2012)

January 20, 2016 - Presented to: Senate Committee on Energy, Utilities and Communications.


What Is the Adult Education Block Grant?

January 6, 2016 - What Is the Adult Education Block Grant? This is one of a series of issue briefs examining important questions about education funding in California. For more, see our EdBasics page.

Education Staff

Jason Constantouros
(916) 319-8322
University of California, Hastings College of the Law, California Institute for Regenerative Medicine
Kenneth Kapphahn
(916) 319-8339
Proposition 98, School District Budgets, School Transportation
Paul Steenhausen
(916) 319-8303
California Community Colleges
Sara Cortez
(916) 319-8348
Early Education and Child Nutrition
Amy Li
(916) 319-8358
Special Education, Teachers and Administrators, School Facilities
Lisa Qing
(916) 319-8306
California State University, Student Financial Aid
Michael Alferes
(916) 319-8338
Local Control Funding Formula, Charter Schools, Alternative Schools, High School Career Technical Education
Edgar Cabral
(916) 319-8343
Deputy Legislative Analyst: K-12 Education
Jennifer Pacella
(916) 319-8332
Deputy Legislative Analyst: Higher Education