ERIC Number: ED330098
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Nov
Reference Count: N/A
Education Finance in the 1990s.
Augenblick, John; And Others
Over the past 2 years, nearly half the states have been debating the fairness and/or constitutionality of their school financing systems. Renewed interest can be traced to changing demographic and economic contexts since the 1970s and a decade of reform calling for qualitative school improvements. Although school revenue more than doubled between 1980 and 1990, the source of that revenue changed; a significant decrease in federal revenue has been offset by increases in state and local revenue. Two major issues are making the tax system more balanced and broadening tax bases. Fiscal distress in the 1990s should inspire state and local governments to pursue finance reform. In reforming local taxes, localities have been interested in reducing reliance on the property tax. Resurgence in school finance activity may also be attributed to recent successful challenges to the constitutionality of school finance statutes in Montana, Kentucky, Texas, and New Jersey. The school finance activity during the last 20 years has failed to improve interdistrict equity; some of the new state educational improvement funds may be disequalizing, and other state aid systems are outdated. Future school finance activity will increase as litigation focuses attention on inequities across school districts in particular states and/or the lack of sufficient funds to provide high-quality education services. Appendices summarize school finance cases, outline state school finance studies, and list 21 references. (MLH)
Descriptors: Court Litigation, Educational Equity (Finance), Educational Finance, Elementary Secondary Education, Finance Reform, Funding Formulas, School Taxes
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Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Education Commission of the States, Denver, CO.