Facts and insights about Texas public schools
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Comprehensive School Finance Reform Is Essential

A new editorial in the Dallas Morning News notes that budgets are about choices. With optimistic revenue estimates and a state Rainy Day fund with its largest-ever balance ($12 billion), it encourages state leaders to use the opportunity to fix the state’s broken school finance system.

“The reality is that state competitiveness takes a hit every year this system remains in place,” the editorial notes. “…Although the school finance system meets the minimum requirements under the state’s constitution, it is not delivering for children or taxpayers. School taxes account for the biggest portion of a homeowner’s property tax bill. By not addressing this issue head-on, lawmakers perpetuate school funding inequity that hurts districts, students, and taxpayers.”

The editorial recommends that the Texas Commission on School Finance provide the Legislature “…with a concrete idea of what it takes to educate children in Texas to high levels of achievement.” It also urges the commission to avoid the easy way out by recommending that districts get by with less money than they need—“something they’ve been asked to do for far too long.”

“The bottom line is that taxpayers and schoolkids cannot be forced to suffer through another failed attempt to reform school finance in Texas. There is never a good time to spend billions, but the system has to change and change now, for the sake of future generations,” the editorial concludes.

Read “Educating our kids it too important for anything less than comprehensive school finance reform,” in the Dallas Morning News.

July 26, 2018