Florida charter schools underfunded, Ball State U. study says
The push is on across the nation to expand charter school options for students as a way to improve public education.
Yet if history serves as a guide, the charter schools throughout the country are likely to get much less money per student than mainstream schools receive, according to a new Ball State University study called Charter School Funding: Inequity Persists.
Florida is part of the trend. The study's analysis of Florida charter school funding indicates that charter schools got $2,749 per student less, or 25.1 percent, in 2006-07. That's one of the biggest gaps among all states reviewed.
The report notes that Florida does not treat charter schools as separate districts, limiting their access to some federal funds. Florida also makes some state funding less available to charters than to regular schools.
The authors say this is a big problem:
"Charter schools have remained underfunded, and in some cases severely so, as compared to public school districts. The persistence of this fiscal inequity should be of major concern not only to charter school advocates, but to all educators, parents and citizens interested in the welfare of the children attending these schools."