The school funding plan introduced by leaders of the Ohio House this week was presented as providing funding increases to hundreds of districts compared to the governor’s budget, while minimizing the impact of the so-called “guarantee” that had so angered districts around the state.
However, the overall increase is a mirage.
In funding districts, the House plan includes money for transportation and Career-Technical education within the formula amount each districts will receive. The Kasich Achievement Everywhere plan did not.
If you back out the Transportation and Career-Technical figures from House numbers in order to get a better apples-to-apples comparison between the two plans, there is $121 million less in FY 2014 and $73 million less in FY 2015. That’s an almost $200 million cut from the Kasich plan, which was derided by nearly everyone for retaining the massive education cuts from the previous two-year budget.
Districts will certainly notice that the only reason they’re doing better under the House plan is Transportation and Career-Tech. And my guess is they won’t be happy.
Also, because the House capped the gains any one district could receive — and Transportation and Career-Tech funding is subject to that gain cap — many districts’ Transportation and Career-Tech funding are effectively cut. Under the Kasich plan, those items would not have been subject to any limitations.
All in all, a very disappointing discovery, but one that can still be fixed. Let’s hope legislators see fit to do so.
(crossposted from Steve’s personal blog, 10th Period)