Perrysburg Superintendent Illuminates the Issue

Board Learns More on Fair Funding for Schools
Posted on 04/17/2019
Image of Perrysburg Local Schools Superintendent Tom HoslerPerrysburg Local Schools Superintendent Tom Hosler contributed his time and efforts to shedding more light on the Cupp-Patterson Fair School Funding Plan for Ohio's public schools. Hosler spoke at the invitation of Akron Public Schools Treasurer Ryan Pendleton, who invested a great deal of time in assisting with work on the funding plan in Columbus. Hosler and Pendleton spent time together working on the proposal in support of the two legislators' efforts.

Hosler addressed the Akron School Board April 15 to give details of the plan to allow more appropriate funding to flow to each of Ohio’s 610 school districts.

Hosler said the plan is to wrap the Fair School Funding Plan into the state budget bill now pending in the Ohio House and told the board, the bipartisan Fair School Funding Plan calls for:
  • establishing how much it costs to educate the average student in a typical school district;
  • determining the best teacher:student ratio for each grade level;
  • providing a technology device for each student;
  • funding high quality preschool for all economically disadvantaged four-year-olds;
  • determining the local share of funding based on the community’s property wealth and income;
  • providing additional state funding of $422 per student living in poverty, up from the current $272; and
  • increasing funds for special education students.
Hosler and Pendleton told the board Cupp-Patterson would fund charter school and voucher school students directly, rather than having the funding pass through local school districts.

The hope is, from lawmakers, that the plan would be approved for a four-year phase-in, but details on this are still pending. The plan is the result of 15 months of work with educators, legislators and school finance experts such as Pendleton of APS.

Ohio’s current school funding system relies on a combination of local property and income taxes, state money, lottery profits and federal funds. It is a convoluted system packed with nuances and caveats.

Pendleton has said numerous times that almost no one can explain the formula we have now.

The state share distributed to Ohio’s 610 school districts is about $10.5 billion, including nearly $1 billion for approximately 370 charter schools, according to the Ohio Department of Education. How much a district receives is based primarily on student enrollment and property wealth of a district.

Higher-wealth districts get less state aid, while poorer districts depend heavily on state funding.

In 1991, the Ohio Coalition for Equity and Adequacy of School Funding filed suit in Perry County on behalf of student Nathan DeRolph, alleging that the state failed to provide adequate money for an “efficient” education system, which is required by the Ohio Constitution.

In 1997, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled that the school funding system was unconstitutional and ordered the state to fix it. Lawmakers added money and made minor changes but didn’t substantially reform the system. The high court ruled in 2000, 2001 and 2002 that the system remained unconstitutional.

Hosler and Pendleton say they believe the new proposal would meet constitutional requirements.

Image of Perrysburg Local Schools Superintendent Tom Hosler contributed his time and efforts to shedding more light on the Cupp-Patterson Fair School Funding Plan for Ohio's public schools. Hosler spoke at the invitation of Akron Public Schools Treasurer Ryan Pendleton, who invested a great deal of time in assisting with work on the funding plan in Columbus. Hosler and Pendleton spent time together working on the proposal in support of the two legislators' efforts.  Hosler addressed the Akron School Board April 15 to give details of the plan to allow more appropriate funding to flow to each of Ohio’s 610 school districts.  Hosler said the plan is to wrap the Fair School Funding Plan into the state budget bill now pending in the Ohio House and told the board, the bipartisan Fair School Funding Plan calls for: establishing how much it costs to educate the average student in a typical school district; determining the best teacher:student ratio for each grade level; providing a technology device for each student; funding high quality preschool for all economically disadvantaged four-year-olds; determining the local share of funding based on the community’s property wealth and income; providing additional state funding of $422 per student living in poverty, up from the current $272; and increasing funds for special education students. Hosler and Pendleton told the board Cupp-Patterson would fund charter school and voucher school students directly, rather than having the funding pass through local school districts.   The hope is, from lawmakers, that the plan would be approved for a four-year phase-in, but details on this are still pending. The plan is the result of 15 months of work with educators, legislators and school finance experts such as Pendleton of APS.  Ohio’s current school funding system relies on a combination of local property and income taxes, state money, lottery profits and federal funds. It is a convoluted system packed with nuances and caveats.  Pendleton has said numerous times that almost no one can explain the formula we have now.  The state share distributed to Ohio’s 610 school districts is about $10.5 billion, including nearly $1 billion for approximately 370 charter schools, according to the Ohio Department of Education. How much a district receives is based primarily on student enrollment and property wealth of a district.  Higher-wealth districts get less state aid, while poorer districts depend heavily on state funding.  In 1991, the Ohio Coalition for Equity and Adequacy of School Funding filed suit in Perry County on behalf of student Nathan DeRolph, alleging that the state failed to provide adequate money for an “efficient” education system, which is required by the Ohio Constitution.  In 1997, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled that the school funding system was unconstitutional and ordered the state to fix it. Lawmakers added money and made minor changes but didn’t substantially reform the system. The high court ruled in 2000, 2001 and 2002 that the system remained unconstitutional.  Hosler and Pendleton say they believe the new proposal would meet constitutional requirements.  Image of Perrysburg Local Schools Superintendent Tom Hosler
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