New Education Funding Formula

On Monday, Governor Dannel Malloy released his new plan to redistribute educational funding in the state with a formula that is more transparent and fair.

The new plan is meant “to address disparities in funding the state’s education system, stressing that waiting for further judicial action on the matter will only result in wasted time and wasted opportunity on behalf of students in Connecticut,” said Malloy.

Malloy’s plan would overhaul the current Education Cost Sharing grant formula because it alters how student poverty is measured in each school district.

By doing so, it creates “a grant pool of roughly $575 million to help towns pay for special education,” according to the CT Mirror.

This pool would then redistribute the funds to impoverished school districts that need funding most.

“For the first time in more than a decade, the proposed new formula will count current enrollment, and it recognizes shifting demographics of small towns and growing cities,” said patch.com. “To better ensure support is directed to communities with higher concentrations of poverty, it will use a more accurate measure of poverty by replacing the free and reduced price lunch measure with HUSKY A data.”

“Under the proposal, a new Special Education Grant will be created and funds allocated on an adjusting scale based on a municipality’s relative wealth,” stated a press release on the proposal.

Changes to the way educational funds are distributed in the state are needed. There are constantly drastic social and economic changes in the demographics that make up school districts throughout the entire state.

This directly impacts the needs of the students in these districts and in turn, the funds received. It seems counterproductive to allocate the same amount of funds to all school districts statewide, when the needs of some are far greater than others. The focus should be on the quality of education the districts are producing.

All school districts in the state should have the resources to maintain a certain high quality of education. To do so, each district must be closely examined to ensure they receive funding for what they need.

Connecticut is known for its extremely high education and wage gap.  Hopefully this funding further helps the progression in some of Connecticut’s towns and cities that are in need of the proper amount of funding.  Connecticut is consistently one of the top states in the nation academically; this redistribution plan should continue to improve that.

Malloy will be presenting his new budget formula today, at the Connecticut General Assembly while he presents his full state budget proposal.