Friday, April 1, 2016

New NJ Spotlight Column: NJ's School Funding Formula and Abbott Designations Are Fossilized: Time to Move On

It starts here:
In 1991, two German hikers found a frozen body in the Otzal Alps on the Austrian-Italian border. “Otzi,” as he’s fondly called, is believed to have died about 3350 BCE, either of an intestinal parasite or as a victim of ritual sacrifice, his body preserved for over 5,000 years in the icy Tyrolean mountains. 
New Jersey’s school-funding formula isn’t quite so old and mummified but, like Otzi, can’t adapt to current climes and is rigidly frozen into postures that don’t address the needs of our school districts. Late last week, state Senate President Steve Sweeney (D-Gloucester) and Sen. Jennifer Beck (R-Monmouth) proposed a modest tweak to our school-funding corpse, formally called the School Funding Reform Act (SFRA). The senators deserve praise for their boldness -- any proposed reform to SFRA is politically fraught -- and yet their proffered adjustment is hardly enough to resuscitate the old boy’s usefulness in addressing fiscal equity in a rapidly changing educational landscape.
Read the rest here.

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