Category — White Papers
School districts that seek to issue bonds may only do so with the approval of the local community in a bond referendum. Nearly 99% of all outstanding school district debt, about $62.6 billion, is voter-approved debt.
School district debt potentially falls into one of four categories:
- Voter-approved debt (98.4%)
- Maintenance and operations debt (1.0%)
- Lease revenue (0.6%)
- Revenue debt (0.01%)
Read more about school district bonds here.
June 11, 2012 No Comments
The Texas Education Commissioner announced today that the implementation of the 15% grading requirement connected to STAAR end-of-course tests will be deferred for one year. News release located here.
February 17, 2012 No Comments
The State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness or STAAR, will replace the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) program beginning in spring 2012. There’s a helpful downloadable question and answer document posted by TEA here.
January 2, 2012 No Comments
Proposition 6 will read: “The constitutional amendment clarifying references to the permanent school fund, allowing the General Land Office to distribute revenue from permanent school fund land or other properties to the available school fund to provide additional funding for public education, and providing for an increase in the market value of the permanent school fund for the purpose of allowing increased distributions from the available school fund.”
The words “to provide additional funding for public education” should be carefully considered. Future legislatures could use money freed up by this amendment to increase funding for public schools, however, for the 2012-13 state biennium, Proposition 6 will produce no additional funding for public schools because of SB 2.
Senate Bill 2 (82nd Legislature, 1st Called Session) contains a provision that, if the constitutional amendment passes, public schools will receive an additional $150 million each year of the biennium from the General Land Office’s Permanent School Fund distribution, but schools will lose $150 million each year in state general revenue funding. Zero sum gain.
For more information on Proposition 6, go here.
October 24, 2011 No Comments
If you read only headlines, you are bound to think that Texas public schools have taken a sudden turn for the worse. Last week the Commissioner of Education released accountability ratings, and those ratings went down for schools all over the state.
What you don’t learn from the headlines in many cases is that it wasn’t the school that changed; it was the rating criteria that changed. TASB published a guide to what is going on that begins this way:
Accountability ratings are intended to communicate to the public how well one school or district is performing compared to others like it. But, we have multiple accountability systems that have produced inconsistent ratings based on different measures of performance, different student groups and different performance standards. As a result, school district officials have a hard time explaining and the public has a hard time understanding what the accountability ratings mean. The Texas Education Agency’s (TEA) sudden decision to discontinue using the Texas Performance Measure (TPM) in calculating the 2010-11 ratings will make it even more difficult for the public to discern what those accountability ratings are telling us about our public schools.
Read the document here.
August 4, 2011 No Comments
Now that the Legislative session is done, what are the next steps? Perhaps the most important step would be to share information with Texas parents and community members.
Here’s a one-pager that could be used as a handout at a meeting or as talking points for a presentation.
Other tools for sharing information about school funding can be found in the Important Topics box on the front page of the TASB Web site (tasb.org).
July 6, 2011 No Comments
What are the sources of funding for Texas public schools?
It can be baffling. We know we pay property taxes. There’s the lottery. And on and on.
Check out this quick description of how the local, state, and federal funds combine to fund schools: Sources of Revenue for Public Education.
May 31, 2011 No Comments
As the state nears completion of its budget for 2011-13, and as it looks more and more certain that Texas schools will lose billions — with a B — from their current level of funding, talk turns to how the smaller amount of money will be distributed among the state’s school districts.
One of the options is “proration” of funding.
Check out this explanation of what that means. http://www.tasb.org/legislative/legislative/reports/documents/proration.pdf
May 20, 2011 No Comments
Looking for facts, figures, and other good sites relating to Texas public school funding? The Resources page has a number of reports, white papers, and links to keep you informed. Look for regular updates.
March 27, 2011 No Comments
Need some background on how school funding works? The Texas Education Agency has an entire School Finance section on its Web site, and the Texas Association of School Boards has a couple of white papers that might help:
And be sure to check out our Resources page to find more help and sites with good information!
March 25, 2011 No Comments