Ohio House Democratic Leader Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron) recently expressed her support for state Reps. John Patterson (D-Jefferson) and Bob Cupp’s (R-Lima) comprehensive, bipartisan school-funding reform efforts, which seek to fix Ohio’s unconstitutional, broken funding model.
“This plan is the result of over a year’s worth of bipartisan work to fix the broken, unconstitutional school formula that has held back too many Ohio children for over a generation. Through this ongoing bipartisan effort, I believe we have a real opportunity to ensure every child in every school across the state can live up to their individual, God-given promise and the promise of our state,” Sykes said.
The plan was unveiled last week and detailed in Ohio House Finance Subcommittee on K-12 education. Overall, the plan calls for an additional $400 million in state spending the first year to help drive resources to high poverty districts and schools with rapidly growing populations.
“By working together, we can restore the promise of Ohio and invest in our future to grow the next generation of business and civic leaders, entrepreneurs, and workers in every community of our state,” Sykes added.
For the first time in Ohio, the “Fair School Funding Plan” represents a real effort to plan for the actual cost of teaching a child. The breakdown of the base cost funding components are:
– 60% for classroom teaching.
– 15% for instructional and student supports.
– 20% for school operations.
– 5% for district administration and financial management.
The plan increases state funding to $422 per student living in poverty, up from the current $272, while allowing local schools to retain local control over the spending and allocation of funds to meet their school district’s needs.
“I applaud the efforts of the many lawmakers, school officials and educators whose work helped present us with this chance for a meaningful discussion on a permanent and fair school funding plan. In the coming weeks and months, I look forward to that discussion supporting an appetite for real change among Ohio’s elected officials,” Leader Sykes said.
The fair school funding plan would also allocate one technological device per student in the state and directly fund charter schools instead of passing charter school funding through traditional schools first.