School Funding Transparency

This bill will lead to the creation on an interactive website where parents can learn how much federal, state and local dollars are provided for their child’s education.

Background:

The 2016-2017 State Education Budget in Florida was $23.8 billionwhich represents close to a third of the state’s total annual spending. But what does that specifically mean for a parent? And each student?

Every parent should know how much money their school receives to educate their child. Currently, school districts are required to provide parents an annual public school accountability report, including the average amount of money expended per student in each of the district’s schools.

Unfortunately, the information is not always provided in a parent-friendly way. This bill aims to provide an easy-to-navigate tool that allows parents to see how much state, local and federal funding is provided for their child. This information would be made available in a clear and transparent manner to readily inform decision making and support the fair and effective use of public resources.

Bill Summary:

    • Requires the Florida Department of Financial Services (DFS) to create a website to provide parents with the estimated amount of federal, state and local funding provided for their child
      • The estimated amount would be based on the parents’ responses to certain questions, including school district, grade level, whether the child qualifies for free or reduced-price meals and whether the child is identified as a student with disabilities, gifted or an English language learner.

    • Requires the Florida Department of Education to provide DFS with the data needed for the website, including an average per-student amount for capital outlay.