Last month, during his state of the state address, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy announced that he planned to propose a new school funding formula to replace the Education Cost Sharing grant (ECS) — today, the governor’s office released details of his proposal.
While visiting New Britain’s Smalley Academy, citing the groundbreaking CCJEF v. Rell decision, Gov. Malloy announced plans to revise the state’s ECS grant, which will likely shift more funding from wealthier to poorer towns.
To view the governor’s press conference, here’s a link to the Hartford Courant’s video
During the press conference, Gov. Malloy did not release specific town-by-town dollar amounts, those details are set to come out on Wednesday when he announces his full budget plan — however, here’s what we know:
- Gov. Malloy said he does not plan on lowering that amount of money the state spends, but rather revamp the ECS formula so that it’s more equitable.
- The proposal will factor in current enrollment and change the way poverty level is calculated. Instead of using “free and reduced lunch,” which is skewed by changes to the federal program (more on that can be found here), the governor is proposing that HUSKY A data is used instead.
- The proposed formula will be weighted for cities and town that face concentrated poverty, recalibrating the formula for town wealth.
- The proposed formula would separate special education funding from the ECS, the main state grant for education. The governor is also proposing a $10 million increase in the allocated amount the state provides for special education.
- The proposal would eliminate MBR for Non-Alliance Districts in FY19 and require the Department of Education to develop recommendations for an alternate method of ensuring adequate local funding of education. It would also allow towns that fail to meet MBR due to financial hardship to apply to the State Board of Education for a waiver from statutory penalties.
For more on the proposal, here’s the state’s fact sheet: