Amid demands on school districts for increased spending, a troubling trend is emerging: School district leaders are approving budgets and signing labor deals they can't afford. It's a dangerous and disruptive cycle that throws these districts into financial turmoil, produces layoffs that hurt students as well as teachers, and can leave states and taxpayers on the hook for
Raise the topic of education finance and most jump to the revenue side of the equation: Is there enough money? Are districts funded equitably? But the spending side is equally important and is about to get much more attention, thanks to a provision in the Every Student Succeeds Act that will make school-level spending data public. District
Recent research reveals a lot about what those in schools and the broader public know about school finance, and what they don’t. It’s very clear that there are some important knowledge gaps about how schools are funded—and that many people are hungry to engage with the issue more fully. There is also a clear need for
As LAUSD asks local voters to approve a $500 million annual parcel tax, some groups are asking for financial reform in return. Trust in the district’s financial leadership is low, school performance is lagging, and the district is bleeding cash to cover commitments made in years past. As Marguerite Roza and Anthony Drew note in this commentary, many of the
Over the last two decades, dozens of big districts (including those in New York City, Boston, Denver, Houston, and Chicago) have shifted to using a weighted student formula to distribute some portion of their total budget. In this blog, Marguerite Roza discusses initial findings from Edunomics Lab’s ongoing IES-funded research study that seeks to document the range of
The U.S. Department of Education’s proposed 2020 budget included a largely overlooked provision that could bring more autonomy to schools in how they deploy federal dollars. In this commentary, Marguerite Roza urges legislators to consider the pilot program to give school leaders and staff a say in how federal resources are used in their schools—and a chance to
In this blog post, Marguerite Roza discusses the new U.S. Department of Education guidance on monitoring the “supplement-not-supplant” (SNS) provision of Title I. SNS specifies that federal Title I funds for schools with high concentrations of poverty must be used to augment state and local funding, rather than offset it. Where the Obama Administration attempted (and failed) to require
Just like the years leading up to 2008, the last few years have yielded stronger growth in funds for schooling. And just like in 2008, there are signs of troubleahead. While we can’t predict how an economic downturn will affect every district, we can anticipate some big-picture trends, and in doing so potentially help insulate school systems from needless
While the revenue side of education finance gets plenty of attention (Is there enough money?), the spending side is equally important and yet gets short shrift. This is partly due to a lack of visibility into how the money is spent. But that is about to change, thanks to a new provision in the Every Student Succeeds Act.
Marguerite Roza August 4, 2017 In this post and podcast Marguerite Roza shares how a sleeper provision in the Every Student Succeeds Act will serve up a motherlode of never-before-available school-level financial data. And how if we seize the unprecedented opportunity this data offers, we will be better equipped to tackle some of education’s most pressing issues.
Marguerite Roza September 2015 In this oped Marguerite Roza describes one critical issue underlying the fall 2015 Seattle Public Schools teachers' strike that neither the Seattle School District nor the Seattle Education Association, the teachers’ union, took on: the built-in inequities across schools created by the district’s outdated, traditional pay scale. Read More
Marguerite Roza April 2018 Is spending more on education the best way to improve schools and teaching? Marguerite Roza participated in an online conversation "Room for Debate" hosted by NY Times. Read her response to the question ~ Is spending more on education the best way to improve schools and teaching? (Basically, does more money mean better
Marguerite Roza and Jim Simpkins December 2014 In this OpEd Marguerite Roza and Jim Simpkins suggest Seattle Public Schools consider allocation policies similar to many large urban districts that give schools control over how they use district funds to educate their school community. Read More
Amanda Ripley October 2013 In this article published by The Atlantic author Amanda Ripley, describes the role of high school sports in the American education system, how current resource allocations favor sports over academics and consequences as American students fall behind in international rankings and draws on Marguerite Roza’s research. Read More