K-12 spending in RI up 2.7% since ’08 as most other states cutSeptember 5th, 2012 at 11:09 am by Ted Nesi under Nesi's Notes, On the Main Site
Despite five-and-a-half years of economic malaise, Rhode Island boosted K-12 spending by $137 per student between 2007-08 and 2012-13, according to the study by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities in Washington. That’s a five-year increase of 2.7% after inflation.
Much of that extra money just arrived.
The study shows Rhode Island hiked per-student education spending by an inflation-adjusted 9.5% this fiscal year, a bigger percentage increase than any other state. Spending is up $452 per student in Rhode Island for the 2012-13 school year.
Rhode Island adopted a new education-funding formula in June 2010 to allocate K-12 money to school districts, ending its run as the only state in the nation without such a formula. The previous formula had been abolished 15 years before.
“Research from all over the country has shown that low incomes tend to be linked to more expensive services in schools,” Senate Education Committee Chairwoman Hanna Gallo said at the time. “This formula recognizes that link and addresses that challenge. This formula ensures that each school district gets the funding it needs to support its students.”
Education Commissioner Deborah Gist, who was appointed by Governor Carcieri and retained by Governor Chafee, was one of the leading advocates for the new formula. This past June, lawmakers agreed to allocate extra money to the education formula as proposed by Chafee and Gist.
• Related: Moody’s praises RI school funding hike, warns on Woonsocket (June 27)