Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Proposal A and a Broken 20j Promise

Last night the Governor broke the Promise of 20j; a promise that Proposal A would lift the floor of School funding, not drag down the top.

The right thing to do is treat every district fairly, what the Governor did was single out 40 districts that operated under the 20j provision. That provision was a CORRECTION to a FORMULA ERROR embedded in Proposal A. For these 40 districts, the Governor has made a bad situation dramatically worse, while providing NO PRACTICAL HELP for the other 511 public districts and 233 public academies.

Specifically, there are 214,323 students in the forty 20j districts, the Governor has taken an average of $241/student away from these kids (ON TOP OF THE $165/student cut) while maintaining the net $165/cut per child over the rest of the state. She didn’t even attempt to mitigate the $165 cut with the 20j funds, she just singled out these districts for extra pain.

The impact on these students reflects the math problem that 20j corrected. While Birmingham is harmed, other districts that spend just sightly above the foundation allowance are devastated by this move. The current data is below (data pulled from the October 2009 State Aid Report):
State Aid 20j Impact 2009-10

There is NOTHING fair, equitable, or just about this politically motivated attack by the Governor.


Olivia said...

How on earth did they come up with these numbers? Why is Northville, who is getting less than so many other districts getting such a disporportionately larger cut? How do they decide who to steal from?

Rob Lawrence said...

This is at the heart of 20j, it really did fix a structural problem with Proposal A. The perverse nature of that structural problem is that 20j's impact is largest for those districts that are closest to (but just over) the maximum allowed foundation allowance. So now that those funds have been cut by the Governor, those districts face major disruptions.