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May 16, 2018      2:20 PM

Colbert: TEA is way off when it comes to allotments for public education

Former Rep. Paul Colbert breaks down the claim that allotments have increased 772% while student enrollment grew by 63%; and says “it is no wonder that the members of the Commission – and of the Legislature – have a hard time figuring out what is currently being spent on programs

Last Monday's article in the Quorum Report called “Allotments a growing part of school finance funding, especially in last decade may create the mistaken impression that Texas has acted to specifically increase funding for the programs that serve students with various special needs. This is the result of a Texas Education Agency presentation to the Texas Commission on Public School Finance which created that false impression by including a lot of data without proper explanation.

The biggest sources of confusion in this presentation were contained in page 5 and page 43 of the document, which you can see here.  

The page 5 headline announced that "allotments have increased by 772%” while student enrollment only grew by 63%.  Let's break that down, using these numbers reported in the article from page 43 of the presentation:  "the cost per student for special programs has grown from $336 per student in 1986 to $1,797 in 2017."

The complete guest column by former Rep. Paul Colbert is in the R&D Department.

By Paul Colbert

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