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Pennsylvania Education Funding Reform Campaign. PA Education Policy Forum Pittsburgh November 29, 2007. Purpose. Advocates for fair funding and educational opportunity in Pennsylvania

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pennsylvania education funding reform campaign

Pennsylvania Education Funding Reform Campaign

PA Education Policy Forum

Pittsburgh

November 29, 2007

EPLC - November 29, 2007

purpose
Purpose
  • Advocates for fair funding and educational opportunity in Pennsylvania
  • Goal is the enactment and maintenance of a statewide education funding system that supports the principles of equity, adequacy, efficiency, accountability and predictability
  • Coordinated by the Education Law Center, Good Schools Pennsylvania, and The Education Policy and Leadership Center

EPLC - November 29, 2007

campaign strategies
Campaign Strategies
  • Inform state policymakers
    • importance of effective schools
    • link between funding and student achievement,
    • elements of a fair and effective funding system
  • Identify and support champions among state policymakers
  • Engage education and other community organizations in collaborative effort to build public support for changes in state policy
  • Mobilize citizen action to call upon Governor and General Assembly to enact changes in state policy, and to hold policymakers accountable for actions on this issue.

EPLC - November 29, 2007

costing out study
Costing-Out Study
  • Creation of Study
  • Methodologies Used
  • Assumptions Underlying the Study
  • Three Elements to Costing-Out Resources

> Base cost(excluded food, transportation, community services, capital costs, debt service)

> Student-driven costs

> Other costs (district size, enrollment trends, regional cost of living)

EPLC - November 29, 2007

findings of the study
Findings of the Study
  • Base cost equals $8,003 per student
  • Extra costs
    • Disabilities—1.3 times base cost
    • Poverty—0.43 times base cost
    • ELL*—1.48 to 2.32 times base cost
    • Gifted*—0.20 to 0.674 times base cost

*Higher in smaller districts

EPLC - November 29, 2007

findings of the study1
Findings of the Study
  • The average annual total funding needed per student is $12,057.An average of $9,512 per student was spent in 2005-2006. $2,546 in additional funding is needed for all students to reach academic proficiency and performance expectations.
  • Pennsylvania must increase education spending by $4.61 billion per year over current levels- a 26.8 percent increase—in order to meet established performance standards.

EPLC - November 29, 2007

findings of the study2
Findings of the Study
  • 474 districts are spending below the levels recommended in the study. 1.68 million students attend these under-funded schools
  • It costs far more—on average $3,000 more per student—to provide quality education in districts with the highest students needs
  • Pennsylvania’s transportation spending appears to reasonably address costs faced by districts
  • Pennsylvania has a large variation of wealth from district to district
  • The current state funding system is inequitable

EPLC - November 29, 2007

findings of the study3
Findings of the Study
  • The total of all state and local taxes collected in Pennsylvania is close to national average, but is 6-12 percent lower than collected in six nearby states (DE, MD, NJ, NY, OH, WV).
  • If additional revenues are provided to improve student achievement, such funds should be collected through state taxes and distributed based on the needs and wealth of school districts.
  • The costing out process developed for this study could be used by the state as the basis for a new education funding system.

EPLC - November 29, 2007

public opinion survey
Public Opinion Survey
  • Conducted by Center for Opinion Research at Franklin & Marshall
  • 800 respondents during October 2007
  • Public Education is important
  • All students have a right to quality education
  • Current system is not fair
  • We do not spend enough on education
  • State should pay half or more

EPLC - November 29, 2007

ed finance reform commission
Ed Finance Reform Commission
  • HR 460 - Representatives John Siptroth (D-189) and Beverly Mackereth (R-196)
  • Creates a 41-member commission
  • Assignment: Analyzing results of costing-out study and recommend at a minimum two formulae for distributing state funding
  • Similar Senate Resolution

EPLC - November 29, 2007

reform commission
Reform Commission
  • Four primary goals would be to ensure that:
    • State funds allocated for basic education are distributed adequately and equitably;
    • Allocation of state funding addresses unique characteristics among districts, including changes in demography and needs of students;
    • Allocation of state funding is linked with measures of accountability; and,
    • School districts remain accountable for meeting state academic standards and attaining student proficiency

EPLC - November 29, 2007

reform commission1
Reform Commission
  • Required to:
  • Consider national trends in ed funding and potential relevance to Pennsylvania);
  • Review methods that link funding to accountability systems such as value-added;
  • Examine the impact of federal mandates on the Commonwealth’s schools;
  • Examine impact of state regulations and standards:
  • Study demographic patterns to determine impact of growth and decline in enrollment on districts’ operational costs and positive and negative aspects of school consolidation as a means to affect cost efficiencies;

EPLC - November 29, 2007

reform commission2
Reform Commission
  • Examine efficiency of consolidating current funding programs used to distribute state ed funds - analyze advantages & disadvantages of targeted categorical funding;
  • Review potential local cost control mechanisms that may become necessary if commission’s recommendations lead to state assuming greater funding responsibility;
  • Examine opportunities for improved cooperation & consolidation among districts to improve efficiency and effectiveness of districts’ operations in order to achieve savings and enhance student achievement

EPLC - November 29, 2007

competing property tax relief proposals
Competing Property Tax Relief Proposals
  • Rep. Levdansky - HB 1600
  • Rep. DeWeese - HB 1489
  • Rep. Rohrer - HB 1275
  • Rep. Perzel - HB 1951
  • Sen. O’Pake – SB 1163,1164,1165
  • Sen. Rhoades – SB 1108
  • Others

EPLC - November 29, 2007

how money matters
“How Money Matters”
  • “How Money Matters” Project of EPLC
  • 18-month research project, including a series of public hearings
  • Examine relationship of adequate and equitable funding for public schools to student achievement
  • Identify compelling evidence that money in sufficient amounts and appropriately spent makes a difference

EPLC - November 29, 2007

related issues
Related Issues
  • Property Tax Relief Proposals
  • TABOR
  • Cost-Reduction Task Force
  • District Consolidation

EPLC - November 29, 2007

next steps
Next Steps
  • Follow-Up to Costing-Out Study

> Action by Governor/Legislature

> Funding Reform Commission

  • Funding Proposal by ASAP and Ed Funding Advocacy Group
  • Governor’s Budget Message – Feb. 5
  • Primary Campaign – Jan. 22 – April 22

EPLC - November 29, 2007

next steps1
Next Steps
  • Formal Campaign
  • Launch Campaign Web Site
  • “How Money Matters” Hearings
  • Enlist/Support Action by Individuals and Organizations
  • Legislative Champion Development
  • Build Media Awareness and Support
  • Public Advocacy
  • Policymaker Accountability
  • Governor, 26 Senate, 102 House

EPLC - November 29, 2007

what you can do
What You Can Do!
  • Lessons Learned
  • Building State and Local Champions—Who and what does this impact?
  • Building Legislative Networks—Grassroots Counts
  • Creating and Using Messages That Resonate
  • Using Data to Make a Difference
  • Learning to Make the “Ask”

EPLC - November 29, 2007

slide20
The Education Policy and Leadership Center

www.eplc.org

Education Law Center

www.elc-pa.org

Good Schools Pennsylvania

www.goodschoolspa.org

EPLC - November 29, 2007

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