Listen

Report Shows Ohio's School Funding Hasn’t Changed Much In 20 Years

Aug 15, 2018

A report commissioned by three public school groups shows state funding for K-12 education hasn’t bridged the gap between rich and poor districts.  

The report was commissioned by the Ohio School Boards Association, the Buckeye Association of School Administrators and the Ohio Association of School Business Officials. It’s the first comprehensive look at state and local aid since the Ohio Supreme Court declared the property-tax-based school funding formula unconstitutional. Ohio Public Radio's Karen Kasler reports. 

The report looked at state and local funding for Ohio’s more than 600 school districts over the last twenty years. Though the DeRolph ruling said the state must find a more equitable way to fund schools, researcher Howard Fleeter says overall distribution of state and local money hasn’t changed much.

“The percentage increase that the low-wealth districts had over this 20 years is 3.8% more than the high wealth places.”

 

That’s $107 more per pupil in the poorest districts – where nearly 80 percent of kids are economically disadvantaged. And Fleeter says three quarters of the increase in state money came in the first ten years after DeRolph, while local revenues have been going up in the second decade.