Report Looks at Oklahoma’s Funding Formula, Need for Modernization

Recommends simpler formula tying funding to the student for a fairer system

Oklahoma City (June 18, 2015) – As lawmakers fashion a state budget that will include around $2-billion for common education, a new report commissioned by the Oklahoma Achieves suggests changes to the funding formula used to distribute those funds. Titled “Understanding Oklahoma’s School Funding Formula and Student-Centric Alternatives,” the report is an in-depth look at the complex calculation created more than 30-years ago which determines how much money each district receives.

“Oklahoma businesses are a large source of tax revenue, so it’s critical that business leaders are educated on how that money is distributed to our state’s school districts,” said Oklahoma Achieves Executive Director Jennifer Monies. “We hope that Oklahoma will join several other states which are modernizing their school funding formulas to become more student-centric, transparent and traceable.”

The report shows the multiple sources of funding for common education in Oklahoma, along with the myriad calculations that must be performed for each district to come up with its share of funding from the state. The final number is determined by factors such as number of students in the district, the area the district covers along with its population density, the education level of its teachers and how much money the district gets from local property taxes.

After an explanation of the complex formula Oklahoma uses, the report looks at how other states fund their schools and how they have implemented programs to better tie funding to the student being served.

The report is available on the Oklahoma Achieves website by clicking here.

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