Jerry Ness, superintendent of Fergus Falls Public Schools, Chris Mills, superintendent of Stephen/Argyle Central, and Earl Athman, business manager of the Pierz School District, are MREA members serving on the Minnesota Department of Education’s Education Finance Working Group. They recently provided an update on the progress for MREA. The group reconvened on June 25. It evaluated the progress legislative session and the plan, and identified goals for the next work sessions.
The group was established as part of Governor Dayton’s Seven Point Plan to establish better school funding. The goals of the reform proposals crafted by the working group are to:
- Improve the adequacy, equity and stability of pre-K-12 education funding
- Simplify education funding
- Preserve local control
- Close the achievement gap
- Promote high achievement for all students
- Direct resources closest to students, teachers and the classroom
The Working Group reviewed a series of changes since the members last convened a year ago. Some of those changes included:
- Basic Formula
$50 (1%) increase for FY 2012; additional $50 increase or FY 2013.
- Literacy Aid
Begins in 2013 and includes proficiency aid and growth aid.
- Small Schools Aid
A new component of general education revenue, beginning in FY 2013.
- One-Time Compensatory Aid
This one-time aid for FY 2013 is for the 20 largest districts in the state. They are if their regular compensatory revenue per compensatory pupil unit is less than $1,400.
They also reviewed sunset recommendations, aid payment and property tax levy shifts, alternative compensation participation approaching cap, staff development needs and the state budget outlook through 2015.
View a presentation on the changes in Minnesota School Finance over the past year and learn more about the Education Finance Working Group