Resource Library

Equality/Equity | View All

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  • Dividing Lines - Gated School Districts

    There are over 14,000 school districts across the country. According to this report from EdBuild, many of the 35,000 borders that divide these districts contribute to increasing economic segregation and create barriers to opportunity that is sometimes just out of reach. This occurs in large part because between 40-60 percent of schools’ fortunes depend on property values in the neighborhoods that surround them. According to the report, this reality creates incentives for wealthy areas to wall themselves off from their needy neighbors, keeping their property wealth for their own children’s schools and leaving other communities to fend for themselves. This report highlights examples of these divisions and so-called "island" districts, which are entirely encircled by another district and create barriers to opportunity.

  • KIDS COUNT 2016 Data Book: State Trends in Child Well-Being

    The KIDS COUNT Data Book has been examining the educational, social, economic and physical well-being of children for more than a quarter century. In 2016, the annual study ranked Connecticut fifth in the nation for the overall well-being of its children. The state ranked second in children’s health and third in youth education. The report shows approximately 15 percent of Connecticut children live in poverty, up three percent since 2008. Twenty-eight percent of the state’s children were part of families in which no parent had secure employment, a four percent increase from 2008.

  • Power in Numbers—Arbitrary Funding

    EdBuild's report shows what definitions of "equity" and "opportunity" actually mean for each state, highlighting the average per pupil revenue in all districts in the nation. EdBuild's numbers are adjusted for local variations in the cost of living, and are directly comparable across states and across the country. The report finds there is a significant variation in the resources each district has available for their students, and that the nation's poorest districts receive 21 percent less funding than the wealthiest districts.

  • Powers in Numbers—Resource Inequality

    Although the responsibility to provide public education rests with each state, school funding has historically been left up to local communities. This means resources for schools are, to varying degrees, tied to local wealth and invariably leave schools in low-income communities at a disadvantage. When state courts strike down state funding systems, generally, the remedy is that the state must guarantee equal access to education by providing some form of supplemental funding to schools in poorer neighborhoods to compensate for unequal local resources. EdBuild's analysis of school district revenues (adjusted for differences in cost of living around the country) finds that, even after court-ordered equitable funding measures, the majority of states are still failing to fund students in high-poverty districts at a level equal to or higher than their less needy peers.

  • Is School Funding Fair? A National Report Card – 5th Edition

    The fifth edition of Is School Funding Fair? A National Report Card examines school funding fairness in the midst of a slow economic recovery from the Great Recession. The National Report Card measures the fairness of the school finance systems in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The central purpose of the Report Card is to evaluate the extent to which state systems ensure equality of educational opportunity for all children, regardless of background, family income, where they live, or where they attend school.

  • School Finance Reform and the Distribution of Student Achievement

    This working paper studies the impacts of post-1990 school finance reforms on gaps in spending and achievement between high-income and low-income school districts. The working paper finds reform events–court orders and legislative reforms–led to sharp, immediate, and sustained increases in absolute and relative spending in low-income school districts. Using representative samples from the National Assessment of Educational Progress, the paper also finds reforms caused gradual increases in the relative achievement of students in low-income school districts.

  • The Sensitivity of Causal Estimates from Court-ordered Finance Reform on Spending and Graduation Rates

    This 2015 study examines the impact of court-ordered school finance reform on per pupil funding and graduation rates. The study estimates the impact of overturning a state’s school finance system and finds that, seven years after reform, a state's highest poverty quartile experienced a 4 to 12 percent increase in per pupil spending and a 5 to 8 percentage point increase in graduation rates.

  • Data Bulletin: Connecticut's English Learners (Grades K-12), School Year 2014-15

    Data and analysis from the Connecticut State Department of Education on English Language Learners during the 2014-15 school year. Bulletin details level of support services as well as test scores and demographic breakdowns.

  • Cheating Our Future: How Decades of Disinvestment by States Jeopardizes Equal Educational Opportunity

    This report from the Leadership Conference Education Fund and Education Law Center examines the deficits in school funding and resources, and documents the wide disparities in students’ educational opportunities from state to state. The report provides real-life examples and brief case studies of funding inequalities throughout the nation, and makes recommendations for how equal educational opportunities can be achieved.

  • Is School Funding Fair? A National Report Card – 4th Edition

    The fourth edition of Is School Funding Fair? A National Report Card examines school funding fairness in the midst of a slow economic recovery from the Great Recession. The National Report Card measures the fairness of the school finance systems in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The central purpose of the Report Card is to evaluate the extent to which state systems ensure equality of educational opportunity for all children, regardless of background, family income, where they live, or where they attend school.