State Will Review Wealth Formula for School Funding

As reported in the Cumberland Times-News, the state will conduct a comprehensive review of the adequacy of funding levels established through the Bridge to Excellence Act in 2002.

The Times-News cites a letter written by Stephen Brooks, chief operating officer for the Maryland State Department of Education regarding a study on the adequacy of funding levels that will begin in 2014.  According to the article, changes to the wealth formula will be considered as part of the study.

MACo’s Education Committee has often raised concerns regarding inequities created by the wealth formula. The formula only takes certain wealth measures into account and is influence by changes in student populations,  as explained in the article,

The county is viewed wealthier than other areas in the state because the wealth per-pupil basis decreased by 1 percent and statewide it decreased by almost 2.4 percent, according to Brooks. Under the existing wealth formula, the county is ranked as the fifth wealthiest county in the state. In contrast, the county is ranked in the top 10 and, in some cases, the top five in most poverty indicators, according to Edwards.

For more information see the full story from the Cumberland Times-News and our recent coverage on Conduit Street, Garrett County Faces Potential Closure of Four Schools.

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