The most commonly cited price tag for Florida public schools represents only two-thirds of what they actually spend, a new report from Florida TaxWatch shows. The “true cost,” it says, shines a more favorable financial light on public education alternatives.
“To be good stewards of education dollars,” writes TaxWatch president Dominic Calabro, “it is critical that taxpayers have a clear understanding of how much education revenue is available, how that revenue is spent, and what it is spent on. Without this understanding, taxpayers and policymakers will be unable to determine whether their state and local K-12 education investments are cost-effective.”
As the Florida Legislature enters the second week of an annual session that already is punctuated by budgetary duress, the report tackles perhaps the most widely misunderstood funding formula in public education. It’s called the Florida Education Finance Program (FEFP) and was adopted in 1973 as a way to provide the appropriate balance of state and local funding for basic school operations. Continue Reading →