For Immediate Release: April 16, 2013
Contact: Dale Butland, 614-783-5833
HOUSE BUDGET WOULD CUT 127 SCHOOL DISTRICTS
Think Tank Also Says House Plan Would Give Schools $200 Less Than Kasich Proposal
Columbus — Innovation Ohio, a progressive think tank headquartered in Columbus, released an analysis today showing that under the budget proposed by House Republicans, 127 of Ohio’s 612 school districts would receive less state money in FY 2014-15 than they are currently getting. A separate analysis found that the funding formula in the House plan would provide schools with nearly $200 million less than they would receive under the Kasich proposal.
The House’s proposed budget was released last week after school superintendents and newspaper editorial pages condemned the Kasich Administration’s school funding proposal as inadequate. Although the Governor initially claimed his plan would give more money to poorer districts and less money to wealthier ones, independent analyses showed that 60% of districts — including 80% of the poorest — would receive no funding increases at all.
By contrast, House Republicans said their alternative would not only provide an overall increase in funding, but also minimize the impact of the so-called “guarantee” that ensures no district would receive less money in 2014-15 than they are currently getting.
IO’s analyses show that neither claim is true: schools would get nearly $200 million less than under the Kasich budget proposal, and 127 districts would actually receive a cut from their current funding levels under the House plan.
Said IO President Janetta King:
“After promising to fix Gov. Kasich’s school funding plan, House Republicans delivered only a mirage that would actually make things worse for many districts. Their supposed funding ‘increase’ is achieved through budgetary sleight of hand; namely, by including money for transportation and vocational education in their funding formula. Under the Kasich proposal, this money was provided separately, not as part of the formula.
“With this trick, House Republicans were able to create the illusion that they were providing schools with more money. But when busing and vocational money is backed out of their formula, it turns out that the House proposal actually gives schools $191 million less than the Governor’s proposal would.
“And as the district-by-district analysis we’re releasing today shows, the House proposal adds insult to injury by actually cutting funds for almost 130 different school districts.
The bottom line is that under either the Kasich plan or the one proposed by House Republicans, schools will get no relief from the massive cuts they sustained under the previous two year budget. The GOP is apparently committed to shifting the burden for adequately funding Ohio schools away from the state and onto the backs of local taxpayers. And that means the endless parade of ‘new money’ school levies — already at $1 billion and counting since Kasich took office — will continue unabated.”