Venturesome Capital- State Charter School Finance Systems

In charter schools issues affecting access to federal

Info iconThis preview shows page 1. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

Unformatted text preview: ble for their fiscal responsibilities than for their academic ones. Charter Schools and Federal Funding Federal involvement in charter schools has grown substantially in the last several years, which has raised a number of issues. Three General Accounting Office (GAO) reports pertain to charter school finance issues. In Charter Schools: Issues Affecting Access to Federal Funds (U.S. GAO, 1997), the GAO noted that Title I funds for low-income children and special education funds are allocated to schools that meet established federal, state and local demographic criteria. Although charter schools treated as school districts avoid having to meet additional criteria used to 11 For a critique of the UCLA study see Premack (1998). None of the financial issues raised in our review of the UCLA study are directly addressed in Premack’s review. 19 Venturesome Capital: How States Pay for Charter Schools distribute funds within school districts, these charter schools were no more likely to have received Title I and special education funding than were the charter schools that are treated as components of existing school districts.12 Barriers included a lack of enrollment and student eligibility data to submit to states before funding allocation decisions are made, and the time and costs involved in applying for such funds given the amount of funds available. A similar GAO report Charter Schools: Federal Funding Available but Barriers Exist (U.S. GAO 1998a) found that most charter school operators believed that Title I and federal special education funds are fairly allocated, but that there are some barriers to obtaining funds. Recommendations included more state and district planning to help ensure that federal program resources are directed to eligible students enrolled in charter schools. In a third report, released in 1998, Charter Schools: Recent Experiences in Accessing Federal Funds (U.S. GAO 1998b), the GAO found that slightly more than half of the schools surveyed received fiscal year 1996 start-up grants ranging from $7,000 to more than $84,000. The average grant was $36,000. About two-fifths of the charter schools the GAO surveyed received Title I funds, and slightly more than half of the schools received either direct federal special education funds or federally funded special education services. 12 Federal funding is insufficient to provide Title I programs for all eligible children in most school districts. Districts develop plans to ration funding. Typically, funding goes to schools with the highest concentration of poor children. Under most plans, elementary schools are more likely to receive funds than high schools. 20 Methodology CHAPTER 3 Methodology Like many other studies, our report analyzes and summarizes charter school finance provisions in state charter school laws and regulations. It also takes the next step by examining the procedures and “practices” developed by state finance officials that help determine the amount of funding and when that funding gets to the schools. Our report, however, does not systematically address...
View Full Document

This note was uploaded on 02/11/2013 for the course ECON 101 taught by Professor Smith during the Spring '09 term at Harvard.

Ask a homework question - tutors are online