School funding method used across N.H. isn’t fair to students or taxpayers

Using 10 years of the state’s own data, a team of independent analysts, hired by the Commission to Study School Funding, has stacked up the evidence to prove “something that a lot of us may have felt for a long time,” the commission chairman Rep. David Luneau of Hopkinton said at a recent meeting.

“To see it in writing,” Luneau suggested, brought a “new level of meaning and recognition” to the experts’ key finding: “New Hampshire’s existing school funding system is inequitable from both student and taxpayer perspectives.”

Cities and towns “with higher poverty rates and lower property wealth are doubly penalized,” according to the report, which was prepared by the American Institutes for Research (AIR) and presented to the commission over the past several weeks. School districts with the highest number of economically disadvantaged students spend less, on average, than districts with the fewest needy students. Communities with the

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New Hampshire’s School Funding System Fails Students, Taxpayers: Report

By GARRY RAYNO, InDepthNH.org

CONCORD, NH — The state’s current system is inequitable for both students and taxpayers, according to a recent report discussed Thursday by the New Hampshire Commission to Study School Funding.

The report by the American Institutes for Research found what many proponents of changing the current system have maintained: the education students receive in New Hampshire depends on where they live and that poorer communities pay higher tax rates for less educational resources resulting in lower student outcomes.

“New Hampshire’s current system of funding is not working for large segments of New Hampshire’s students and taxpayers. Specifically, communities with higher poverty rates and lower property wealth are doubly penalized under New Hampshire’s current system,” the report concluded. “Students in these communities, on average, receive fewer resources in the form of funding than students in wealthier communities.”

Commission chairman Rep. David Luneau, D-Hopkinton, said the findings “point

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Report: N.H.’s school funding system fails students and taxpayers | New Hampshire

CONCORD, N.H. — The state’s current system is inequitable for both students and taxpayers, according to a recent report by the New Hampshire Commission to Study School Funding.

The report by the American Institutes for Research found what many proponents of changing the current system have maintained: the education students receive in New Hampshire depends on where they live and that poorer communities pay higher tax rates for less educational resources resulting in lower student outcomes.

“New Hampshire’s current system of funding is not working for large segments of New Hampshire’s students and taxpayers. Specifically, communities with higher poverty rates and lower property wealth are doubly penalized under New Hampshire’s current system,” the report concludes. “Students in these communities, on average, receive fewer resources in the form of funding than students in wealthier communities.”

Commission chair Rep. David Luneau, D-Hopkinton, said the findings “point out problems with the current system

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Laura Sibilia & Katherine Sims: School funding formula unfair to children and taxpayers

Editor’s note: This commentary is by Rep. Laura Sibilia, an independent who represents the Windham-Bennington district in the Vermont House of Representatives, and Katherine Sims, of Craftsbury, the director of the Northeast Kingdom Collaborative and a Democratic candidate for the Vermont House.

For the last 20 years, our public education system has overtaxed and underfunded schools in Vermont’s rural and poor towns. According to the Pupil Weighting Factors Report commissioned by the Legislature to study equity in Vermont’s education funding formula, we incentivize spending less on students who cost more to educate and more on students who cost less to educate. Over the past 20 years, this has resulted in fewer opportunities and increased costs for poor and rural schools and higher taxes for Vermonters.

Despite the best efforts of our school boards, the chronic underfunding has stretched budgets to an extreme and left our schools with challenges like long

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