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Financial Transparency & Equity

BY Laura Anderson
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The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) requires all states to collect and report per-pupil expenditures down to the school level. This reporting, which some states are starting as early as 2019, is expected to uncover inequitable distribution of resources within districts across the country.

The four videos shared here stem from a meeting we convened in February 2017, and are part of a larger conversation about the equity element in the financial transparency provision. The videos may help state education agencies better understand the equity implications of financial transparency as they define and tackle their own financial transparency goals.

  • Per-Pupil Expenditure Data and Advocacy Groups: Sharonne Navas of the Equity in Education Coalition in Washington State explains why the advocacy community considers per-pupil expenditure data an important tool.
  • Technical Challenges and Historical Perspective in Per-Pupil Expenditures: Sheara Krvaric of the Federal Education Group details technical concerns around meeting the financial transparency requirement and outlines earlier federal education accounting requirements.
  • A State Perspective on Equity in Financial Transparency: Donna Nester (Mississippi) and David Blowman (Delaware) share their state education agency perspectives on the importance of communications and how stakeholders will perceive financial transparency.
  • Using Student Based Allocation to Improve Equity: Weston Young from Indianapolis Public Schools explains how the district is using student-based allocation (SBA) to facilitate more equitable distribution of resources among Indianapolis schools.

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