Of all of the hot-button issues seen talked about in the media, something called the Local Control Funding Formula is not among them. It’s one of those issues that takes a great deal of time to understand, which means that it often flies under the radar without much public concern. The LCFF is, however, a vital part of determining how much money goes to California’s K-12 schools, including the ones right here in Sacramento.

The BHC’s Health Happens in Schools program in Boyle Heights has collaborated with their YMCA’s youth media team to produce a music video called “Lights On” on this very subject. The music, produced by Quetzal Flores of the Band Queztal, focuses on the disparities in the Boyle Heights area, which is served by the Los Angeles Unified School District.

“This group is focused on raising awareness of budget issues in education, focused around the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) and the need to request that these state dollars influence and support Low-Income Students, English Language Learners, and Foster Youth, as intended,” says the Weingart East Los Angeles YMCA about the BHC. “In Los Angeles, students and parents are asking LAUSD to promote equity for schools on the east side and provide additional counselors, wellness centers, and mental health services at our schools paid for by LCFF dollars.”

Funding for schools is an important though tedious issue that affects millions in the Golden State, and many feel that the schools in their area are not being treated with enough equity. The lyrics of Quetzal Flores in “Lights On” deliver these criticisms in a palatable yet informative way. She is joined in the video by musicians and local community leaders, including youth in the area who are concerned for their education.

This music video provides an easily accessible platform for anyone who has concerns about the LCFF, but doesn’t know where to turn. After all, it is arguably easier to simply watch a music video than to dig through walls of text on the subject, or attend less-than-exciting School Board meetings.

“Lights On” may not have all of the information needed to take action on such a complex issue, but it still sparks an important conversation about the LCFF in a concise and entertaining way.

To watch “Lights On,” click here.

For more information about the state’s Local Control Funding Formula, click here.