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Funding for Students’ Sake: How to Stop Financing Tomorrow’s Schools Based on Yesterday’s Priorities

BY debraabritt
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Marguerite Roza
Revised September 2019

Allocation formulas have big implications for whether a state’s education system promotes or inhibits increased productivity in schools. As important as state allocation formulas are, they don’t change much over time: while states might tweak their models from year to year, they tend to make major changes only about once every two decades.

Student-based allocation (also known as weighted student funding), where funds are attached to each student and move with students wherever they go to school, provides the most equitable, efficient, and flexible path toward increased productivity. This brief explains why it is a good idea to allocate resources on the basis of students, and measures several states’ progress toward doing so.


An earlier version of this brief was published in 2014.


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