From the SC State House Blog: Chairman Jeff Duncan takes on K-12 Funding Reform.
Despite an average per-child allocation of $11,480, millions of dollars are being siphoned off on bureaucratic waste, administrative salaries and needless staff growth – all while tough economic times are forcing many private school parents to re-enroll their children in public schools.
A streamlined funding system would allow the money to follow the child.
Instead of throwing taxpayers’ money at districts via block grants and programmatic “categories,” the state portion of K-12 spending would follow the child from school to school through a weighted student formula. This type of child specific funding would be a big step toward cutting the shameful 55 cents per dollar waste on non-instructional spending.
Leading the fight for common sense K-12 funding is Representative Jeff Duncan. As he explains in this brief interview, total spending on K-12 education exceeds $7 billion and teachers, parents and lawmakers alike are frustrated with the lack of transparency and efficiency.
Still, some with a heavy and personal financial stake in the status quo have lobbied against reform. This despite a recent admission by Jim Rex himself that greater school autonomy in making spending decisions would help improve instruction and tighten fiscal discipline.
K-12 education is too important for South Carolina to aimless throw ever more money at. Cleaning up the funding system is the necessary first step in moving toward a more just and effective education for all children in the state.