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The governor's education reforms are good steps, but need to go furtherMay 15, 2013
Democratic lawmakers in Colorado just approved the first major overhaul of that state’s school finance system in 20 years. Colorado is moving to a more equitable and transparent funding system with strong accountability provisions that offer valuable lessons to California lawmakers.
Gov. Brown’s recently proposed “Local Control Funding Formula” would simplify school finance, offer school districts flexibility over more than 50 previously restricted funding streams, and provide more resources for disadvantaged students. Gov. Brown deserves credit — the proposal is a very good start. It is simpler, fairer, and more transparent than the state’s current haphazard school finance system.
Yet, there are serious issues the governor’s plan fails to address, including inequities at schools within the same district and a lack of transparent reporting of funding allocations at the school level.
The rollout of Reason Foundation's Annual Privatization Report 2013 continues today with the release of the Education section, which which provides an overview of the latest on school choice, charter schools, student-based budgeting and more.
Subsection of Annual Privatization Report 2013: EducationApril 29, 2013
This subsection of Reason Foundation's Annual Privatization Report 2013: Education reviews developments over the last year in school choice.
Making school funding more equitable and transparentMarch 5, 2013
The growth of student-based budgeting in school districts and a few states mirrors a national trend toward more decentralized school funding where the money follows the child. In the United States, we are in a transition period, moving from funding institutions to funding students. K-12 education funding is moving closer to the funding model for higher education, where the money follows students to the public, private or nonprofit school of their choice. We are moving away from a K- 12 system funded by local resources and driven by residential assignment to a system where funding is driven by parental choice and student enrollment.
Public funding systems at the state and local level are adapting to a “school funding portability” framework, where state and local school funding is attached to the students and given directly to the institution in which the child enrolls. More than 30 “school funding portability” systems (in cities like New York, Baltimore, Denver, Hartford and Cincinnati, and states including Rhode Island, Hawaii and Indiana) are funding students through student-based budgeting mechanisms. In 2012, Prince George’s County, Newark and Boston have moved to full weighted student formula systems where the money follows the child. Los Angeles Unified has more than 100 pilot schools funded on a per-pupil basis. In California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Nevada, Ohio and Utah there are ongoing legislative debates about fixing the state school finance system through a weighted student formula.
Student-based budgeting proposes a system of school funding based on five key principles:
View Resources by Type
- Lessons for Gov. Brown’s California School Finance Plan
The governor's education reforms are good steps, but need to go further
May 15, 2013
- Weighted Student Formula in the States
Subsection of Annual Privatization Report 2013: Education
April 29, 2013
- Frequently Asked Questions About Weighted Student Formula
Is it the right school finance solution for Indiana?
January 24, 2008
- Weighted Student Formula and School Empowerment
Interview with Dr. William G. Ouchi
January 24, 2008
- Urban Schools Scores Rise When Parents, Principals Lead
"Weighted Student Formula" helping urban school districts close the achievement gap
August 26, 2007
- The Weighted Student Formula
Is There a Better Way to Fund Indiana Education?
March 15, 2007
- For Answer to LAUSD's Woes, Look North
Weighted student formula can help mayor improve Los Angeles schools
August 27, 2006
- Align Education Funds and Results
Weighted student formulas help accountability
February 19, 2005
- Restructuring California's School Finance System
State should use weighted student formula
January 23, 2004
- Lessons for Gov. Brown’s California School Finance Plan (5/15)
- New at Reason: Looking Back at the Last Year in Education Reform and School Choice (4/29)
- Weighted Student Formula in the States (4/29)
- Chicago Schools to Implement Student-Based Budgeting and Principal Autonomy (3/18)
- A Handbook for Student-Based Budgeting, Principal Autonomy and School Choice (3/5)
Experts: Weighted Student Formula
- Lisa Snell
Director of Education
RSS Feeds: Weighted Student Formula
Media ContactChris Mitchell
Director of Communications
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