Venturesome Capital- State Charter School Finance Systems

However the typical school district added an extra 15

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Unformatted text preview: ted locally. The state-mandated minimum expenditure, or foundation level, was $5,775 in 1998-99. However, the typical school district added an extra 15 percent to the foundation through local tax levies for general operations, bringing total base revenue to an average of about $6,500 per pupil. State charter school. State-authorized charter schools receive a flat $6,500 per pupil. Consequently, funding does not depend on the location of the charter school or the resident school districts of their students. Although approximately equal to the state average sum of the foundation level and local option property taxes for general operations, the relationship is coincidental. Charter school students are not counted in the district of residence for equalization aid purposes, so school districts could lose about $5,775 in state equalization aid when a student attends a statesponsored charter school.2 A majority of school districts in Connecticut, however, are protected from state aid reductions due to an elaborate system of constraints on growth and reductions in state aid. Funding Based on School District Characteristics: Local district charter schools have access to funding based on all of the unique characteristics of the local school district including higher revenues associated with high wealth and tax effort. State-chartered school funding corresponds only to the state average. 2 Even though state aid supports only about one-third of the foundation level in the average school district, losing students to charter schools increases the wealth-per-pupil component of the state aid formula. Mathematically, the result is the loss of the entire foundation level, not just the state aid component. 114 Appendix Connecticut Special Education: Most school district special education costs are financed from general operating revenue. Consequently, the $6,500 base funding for charter schools includes most of the money an average school district spends on special education. In the most recent revision of the Connecticut charter school law, students identified as needing special education services in a charter school are entitled to a planning and placement team meeting held by the school district in which the student resides. The school district also pays the charter school “reasonable” costs in excess of $6,500 (plus other state, federal and private resources if any) for special education services. Most observers interpret this provision of the charter school law as making special education the responsibility of the school district. If special education costs comprise 18 percent of a school district’s budget (the state average), this in-kind service amounts to $1,000 per member (not just students served) after accounting for state aid ($85 per member) and federal aid ($60 per member). Transportation: School districts in which a charter school is located, including state- authorized charter schools, provide transportation in-kind for students residing in the district. The state provides equalization aid f...
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This note was uploaded on 02/11/2013 for the course ECON 101 taught by Professor Smith during the Spring '09 term at Harvard.

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