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By 2016, the Pennsylvania General Assembly adopted bipartisan funding formula laws for Special Education and Basic Education funding. The fair funding formulas were based on economic criteria like poverty rates, the ability to pay, home values and household income. As many predicted, the formulas revealed widespread funding discrimination between 500 school districts.
 
Today, 219,371 students in the 25 most underfunded school districts are underfunded by $1,068,389,353. These districts are receiving ($4,870) per student less than figure set by the formula laws.  At the same time, 126,791 students in the 25 most overfunded districts get $337,771,405 more than the formula laws allocate.  It’s wrong and needs to be fixed. 
 
Despite full and complete knowledge of the inequity, the Governor and General Assembly have passed four (4) state budgets that have done nothing to fix the worst school funding discrimination in the nation. 

This funding inequity is crushing taxpayers, students, educators, local economies and real estate values.  

It’s simple math. If the state government doesn’t allocate “catch-up” funding to the underfunded school districts, they will remain underfunded by official government policy in perpetuity. 

Equity First seeks the implementation of the recommendations of the Basic and Special Education Funding Commission Reports.

It’s time for affected students, parents, taxpayers, educators, school leaders and community groups to get loud, be heard and demand equality in school funding.

GET LOUD.  FIGHT FOR YOUR RIGHTS.

Equity First Mission: The strategy and tactics of Equity First are focused on fixing Pennsylvania’s discriminatory funding systems for school funding and other government programs.

The Equity First Plan:

* $400 Million in new Basic Education Funding
* $80 Million in new Special Education Funding
* Allocate 75 percent of all new Basic/Special education funding proportionately to underfunded school districts, with the remaining 25 percent of all new Basic/Special Education funding to all 500 school districts through the student-weighted BEFC formula
* Do this for five (5) straight state budgets to get close to fair-funding

Establish the School District Consolidation Fund to encourage the efficient consolidation of school districts.
 
Cap the Fund Balance and Reserve Fund account balances at 18%.

Establish a Cost Savings Commission to scrutinize all K-12 spending to implement cost-saving strategies.