Proposal: School funding bump

Greene County News Report

COLUMBUS — Greene County schools would receive an additional $1.7 million in funding over the next two years under an Ohio Senate budget proposal released Monday.

According to a release from the office of State Senator Chris Widener (R-Springfield), the Senate bill provides “predictability and sustainability for the state’s K-12 funding formula, driving additional dollars to low-wealth, low-capacity districts while ensuring more districts are on the funding formula.”

The budget would still need to pass a Senate vote in the coming weeks.

Under the proposal, more than $935 million new dollars would be invested in primary and secondary education over the biennium, increasing the per pupil formula, special education, career-technical education and K-3 literacy funding ($351.5 million in FY16, maintains that additional funding in FY17 and adds an additional $233 million).

“Districts told us they want a sustainable formula to fund kids,” Widener said in the release. “Tax payers told us they want performance incentives. This plan does both.”

The Senate plan would drive additional dollars to low-wealth, low-capacity districts while bringing more districts onto the state funding formula, according to the release.

In addition, the Senate plan incentivizes performance through two new bonuses based on four-year graduation rates ($60 million over the biennium) and third grade reading proficiency rates ($68 million over the biennium). Additionally, new funding for technology and transportation would be provided for students in low-wealth, rural school districts.

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