"I know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education. This is the true corrective of abuses of constitutional power." - Thomas Jefferson 1820

"There is a growing technology of testing that permits us now to do in nanoseconds things that we shouldn't be doing at all." - Dr. Gerald Bracey author of Rotten Apples in Education

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Thursday, July 26, 2012

National School Board Association's Concern on Cost of Unfunded Federal Mandates is Valid: "We are Where We've Never Been Before"

Think local school district cost was bad four years ago? Just wait until you find out what those costs are now.       Graphic from http://freezethebudget.wordpress.com/2011/01/19/state-mandate-lollapalooza/

The National School Board Association’s (NSBA) President C. Ed Massey, a member of the Boone County, Ky., school board, spoke to his local Rotary Club about the need to relieve local school systems from inflexible federal laws that do not come with enough funding to successfully implement.

Unfunded federal mandates are overwhelming local school districts and can be backed up with recent Census data.  From EducationNews.com:


State not schools’ top source of funding

Census data show local districts in the U.S. are covering more costs.

For the first time in 16 years, local governments paid a higher share of the cost of public education than state governments, a recent report from the U.S. Census Bureau showed.

Across the country, 44 percent of public education cost is covered by local governments, with the state paying 43.5 percent and the federal government paying 12.5 percent.

Georgia’s public primary and secondary schools got about 38 percent of their funding from the state, with local government paying about 48 percent. Federal and private sources accounted for the rest, according to the census report, which covers the year 2010.

“This is huge,” Georgia Board of Education member Wanda Barrs said during a discussion about public education finances last week. “We are where we’ve never been before.”


Are state representatives, local school boards and superintendents now realizing what these federal mandates via Race to the Top and Common Core standards will do to school district budgets?  Can we start talking about refusing to implement mandates that were never voted on either by taxpayers and legislators?  Can we start talking about introducing legislation to rescind federal mandates districts cannot afford?  

Why is the federal government paying 12.5% of education costs but issuing federal mandates requiring 100% compliance that local districts are increasingly having to fund?     

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