California's New Funding System

Special education in the United States, Wealth, Economics

California’s New Financial System; Local Control Funding Formula California’s K-12 school system is currently implementing a new funding system, the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF), eliminating many categorical programs and revenue limits replacing it with a simpler and more equitable method in favor of the many disadvantaged students that attend California’s public schools that make up half of California’s public school population. Disadvantaged students are classified as students that qualify for free or reduced lunch (low-income), foster youth, and English learners. According to a 2007 study conducted by California’s state commission entitled Getting Down to Facts it is believed to cost California 30% more to educate disadvantaged students, although, these districts and schools received less funding than affluent districts under the previous financial system. The Public Policy Institute of California reported 2/3 of Californians believe economically underprivileged students should receive more funding from the state, even if this is at the expense of more affluent districts. The reasons as to why these disparities existed in the face of overwhelming support among Californians and fiscal figures will later be explored. Many parents, teachers and community leaders have varying sentiments about the new funding formula from complete support to speculation of fairness to utter rebuff. Nevertheless, the LCFF will be implemented next year and many are now engaged in the task of perfecting and ensuring that all California’s children benefit from this new financial distribution apparatus. Although, highly regulated many Californian’s felt the old education funding system was highly complex, severely state controlled, administratively costly, perpetuated unequal distribution of limited state funds, and did not take into account the additional funds needed to adequately educate the many disadvantaged students it served. A majority of basic state funds landed...
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