Survey shows 90 percent of education leaders find predictability of state funding 'very important'

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A survey of nearly 600 education leaders shows most want a predictable funding formula and most believe state school funding is inadequate.

The survey of school administrators, board members and school business officials included members of the Pennsylvania Association of School Administrators, Pennsylvania School Boards Association, Pennsylvania Association of School Business Officials, Pennsylvania Association of Rural and Small Schools, and the Central Pennsylvania Education Coalition.

Its results were released today.

Nearly 90 percent said that "predictability" in state funding is "very important."

According to a news release issued by the Pennsylvania School Boards Association, the state -- except for 2008-09, 2009-10 and 2010-11 -- has not used a consistently applied public school funding formula to distribute basic education for more than two decades.

About 75 percent believe state funding should account for 40 to 60 percent of district budgets, but the news release said state funding accounts for about 35 percent in Pennsylvania and about 49 percent nationally.

Most agreed that these factors should be considered in a funding formula: local tax effort compared to districts with similar wealth, population of economically disadvantaged students, district enrollment, district aid ratio, personal income and charter school enrollment.

The online survey was taken in February.

Education writer Eleanor Chute: or 412-263-1955.

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