The Minnesota Department of Education’s School Finance Working Group met July 30 to discuss two key financial pressure points in education funding: property tax equalization and the basic formula.
The basic education formula is the primary funding source for school districts ($6,567 per pupil). One major concern, according to Tom Melcher, is that the basic formula has lost $650 per pupil to inflation since 2013. How do school districts cope? They supplement with local property taxes by passing referendums – which creates a greater disparity in education funding across the state.
The next working group meetings are scheduled for:
- 5 p.m. Thursday, August 13
- 4 p.m. Thursday, August 20
- 4 p.m. Thursday, August 27
- 4 p.m. Thursday, September 10
- 4 p.m. Thursday, September 17
- 5:30 p.m. Thursday, September 24
The group continues to identify their priorities as they begin formulating recommendations for reforming education funding over the next few months.
The working group’s mission is to address education-funding issues facing the state. The group reviews key funding streams, identifies options for school finance reform, and seeks consensus on recommendations for systemic change. A review of previous working group sessions is available on the School Finance Working Group webpage.