Pennsylvania will soon join the overwhelming majority of states that have a student-based formula for distributing state education funds. Both the House passed the measure with a large majority Wednesday. The Senate did so last week. For much of the past 25 years, the state has largely divided it's main pot of education money based on the principle that districts should never get less than the prior year.
Votes on school budgets and school board elections are held across the state today. Plus, New York's school boards association says more schools are seeking to convince voters to override the state’s tax cap.
The advocacy group Public Interest Law Center says the commonwealth's own data point to the need for at least $3.2 billion in added state funding. When the state's bipartisan basic education funding commission published its report last year, it came up with a new formula for distributing new state education dollars. The formula acknowledges that districts face added burdens, for instance, when educating students in poverty, or those still learning English.