School Funding Essay

792 Words 4 Pages
Fund Allocation Paper

School Finance






















Iowa is very unique when it comes to school finance. We use the single count date for the purpose of funding the state’s school districts. This is a count of the number of students in attendance on October 1st. This is when the federal government requires a count of the number of students eligible for the free and reduced price lunch program for purposes of Title I funding. An advantage to using the single count date is that it is reasonably easy and it also helps to cut down on administrative costs. There are many disadvantages to using this system. The single count date does not give districts any type of financial incentives for holding onto
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Around the 1950s, there were several states that began to use average daily membership (ADM) in their financial plans. The key features to any finance strategy are (1) a measure of need, (2) a measure of capacity or wealth, (3) the amount of unit per need that constitutes the program, and (4) the uniform rate to be applied to the measure of capacity. When looking at how to get a good measure of need in a foundation program, it is important to be objective, not subject to local manipulation, unambiguous, and simple. You must also make sure they have a commonsense appeal, be steady rather than fluctuating, and adequately reflect the differences between controllable and non-controllable principles.
States that use Average Daily Attendance (ADA) fund districts based on an average of a count conducted every school day of students in attendance throughout the year. Under ADA, absent students are excluded from the daily count and the district’s average is lowered accordingly. This strategy promotes districts to improve attendance so they may avoid any type of funding cuts. This full year count is considered to be the most accurate of counts when it comes to funding students and also provides districts with financial encouragement to keep students in school and help boost daily attendance. ADA appears to give you a rolling average and would provide statistical data. A disadvantage to using ADA is that a districts’ funding can…