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Thursday, June 27, 2013

2013 Education Budget Bottom Line

There's going to be a lot said about how public education fared in the 2013 state budget. However, I think it's important to put this budget in context. Once you do, this is the bottom line:
  • School districts will receive $515 million fewer in this budget than they got in the 2009 biennial budget
  • 3 of 4 districts will get less money than they got in the 2009 budget, with Cleveland losing $81 million and Cincinnati $15 million
  • Once you remove Career Tech and Transportation funding from this budget, 1 in 4 districts will get less non-Career Tech and Transportation funding than they got in FY13
  • Those numbers do not include additional lost revenue to failing Charter Schools and Private Schools coming from a huge bump in funding for them
  • This budget includes the smallest commitment to overcoming poverty in education since the 2005-2006 school year, yet the state is now dictating how that historically low amount can be spent
  • In the 2010-2011 school year, the proportion of state to local funding for education reached 50-50 for the first time in at least three decades. The first year of Kasich's first budget saw that drop back down to 47% state, 53% local
  • Charter operators that have given about $1 million to politicians get 38% of the Charter School increase, even though they only run about 9% of the state's Charter Schools.
The budget started out -- as introduced by Gov. John Kasich -- as an overall disaster, got a little better, but still was insufficient to make up for the dramatic cuts contained in Kasich's previous budget.

And to add insult to injury, the state will no longer subsidize property tax cuts, which means this budget could represent the largest property tax increase in state history.

I will leave you with the words of the Ohio Supreme Court as you consider this budget:
“. . . until a complete systematic overhaul of the system is accomplished, it will continue to be far from thorough and efficient and will continue to shortchange our students. The overreliance on local property taxes is the fatal flaw that until rectified will stand in the way of constitutional compliance.” -- Justice Alice Robie Resnick