Necessary But Not Sufficient: Funding Equity Measures and Adequacy Across and Within Districts in Washington State
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This thesis examines school funding equity measures currently used to assess inter-district equity and explores options for assessing intra-district equity. This type of analysis may prove to be very useful for school district administrators and Washington State policymakers as new legislation is implemented to address the inadequacy of school funding in response to the Washington State Supreme Court decision McCleary v. Washington. A discussion of current equity measures is presented, followed by a discussion of theories of funding adequacy and recent developments in Washington State. Funding data from the 2009-2010 school year is analyzed and discussed using established equity measures. The results of this analysis show that state funding in Washington is fairly equitable on an inter-district level. However, averages used in state and district level data may mask inequities among schools. In light of the state's new focus on adequacy, which is based on school prototypes, the issue of intra-district equity will become more prominent. This paper seeks to establish a system of measurements on a district level that will allow districts to assess whether the new focus on adequacy is impacting equity among schools.
- Education - Seattle