CROSS CUTTING ISSUES
The Draft Master Plan (section on "Affordability....") states
in summary that basic K-12 educational funding is now on a per-student
basis, in amounts that are not based on actual costs. "This Master
Plan envisions a fundamental change from a traditional focus of the
K-12 financing system on equality of funding ... to one of adequacy,
in which the essential components (personnel, materials, equipment,
and facilities) necessary for an exemplary education are identified
and provided. With this foundation of adequate resources for a high
quality education, schools and students would be truly accountable
for meeting established standards of achievement."
Postsecondary funding is also distributed in amounts that are
similar for each full-time-equivalent student in a particular public
system. Appropriations for the most part do not recognize the cost
differences of different disciplinary programs, student learning
support needs, format (lecture, lab, seminar, etc.) or level (lower
division, upper division, or graduate). Because postsecondary
enrollment is a privilege afforded by statute, not a constitutional
guarantee, the State does not strive to meet the full cost. Federal
and private grant funds pay a portion, as do student fees. The State
has a significant influence on these fees and, therefore, on the
perceived accessibility of postsecondary enrollment by the least
advantaged learners. The committee states "we believe this Master
Plan should seek to establish a financing system for postsecondary
education that supports the goals" of access, affordability, choice,
quality, efficiency, cooperation, accountability shared responsibility;
and that as with K-12 the long-term objective of the State should
be the alignment of allocation and expenditure with the actual costs
of providing educational services.
Finance is related to many of the topics in the Master Plan; the links below lead to pages on this site that give more information in selected areas.
If your organization has material that would be useful
for the online dialogue but is not included in the preceding
list, please e-mail a URL to <email@example.com>.