FUNDING FALLS SHORT
Between inflation and the state’s per-student spending falling behind the national average, public education advocates are asking for more state funding.
the A-F accountability rating system, a financial integrity rating system and certification provisions. Private schools receiving voucher funds would not be subject to these standards, he said. This program would also negatively affect public schools financially, as the state funding they receive is based on students’ average daily attendance. If five or six students opt to take the voucher and leave their public school, that funding lost equates to a teacher’s salary, Popinski said. Barba argues that data from com- parable programs across the country shows a minimal impact on public school attendance. He said similar pro- grams nationally show less than 3% of eligible students use the program in the first five years after its inception, which would amount to about 60,000 students transferring in Texas. “So the idea that there’s an exodus is a myth,” Barba said. Barba said he believes school choice programs can lead to improved public school systems, and families choosing alternative options acts as a signal to districts to design their programs to better suit families’ needs. “When you give families choices, the school districts also improve, and that improves education for every child in the community,” he said. Popinski said vouchers in Texas would ultimately cost about $1 billion a year, and he would rather see that used to increase the basic allotment. “Instead of spending dollars on a new voucher program for private schools and vendors … why not use that general revenue to actually bol- ster public education and get them more resources for teacher pay raises, for new programs, for expanding the things that work?” he said.
STATE FUNDING LAGS
LOCAL INFLATION IMPACTS
The basic allotment, or minimum per-student spending at the state level, has not increased since 2019. In that time, the national inflation rate has been about 17%.
Expenses in Cy-Fair ISD have continued to increase since 2019-20 while the state's basic allotment has remained stagnant at $6,160 per student.
INFLATION COSTS, 2019-22
57% of CFISD’s revenue comes
from local property taxes; 41% comes from the state .
House Bill 3 in 2019 increased the basic allotment from $5,140 to $6,160.
General insurance policies
$56.76 in social and public returns results from every $1 invested in public education, including:
$109M of the district’s $1.17B budget was not accounted for in 2022-23. $80.5M of the district’s $126.1M special education spending is reimbursed by the state.
in private sector benefits
in multiplier effects
in government revenues
in reduced social costs to governments
SOURCES: TEXAS EDUCATION AGENCY, THE PERRYMAN GROUP/ COMMUNITY IMPACT
SOURCE: CY-FAIR ISD/COMMUNITY IMPACT
not have the same restrictions regard- ing what they can teach students.
Director of Policy Bob Popinski said. Since then, there have been a few attempts to bring education savings accounts to Texas, but Popinski said he believes the concept is getting more momentum this session because this has become a growing national trend since the pandemic. Popinski said there are no benefits to public schools under such programs. “You are taking money and divert- ing it from public schools to a private school or vendor that does not have to offer the same accountability as a pub- lic school,” he said. Public schools are held accountable through many avenues, Popinski said, including being governed by locally elected school boards and following publicly reported, state-mandated measures such as standardized testing,
has three children enrolled there and commended Abbott’s priority to let
During Abbott’s Cypress Chris- tian School visit, Presi- dent Jeff Potts said the school instills bib- lical values while focusing on academic excellence. Tuition at Cypress Chris- tian School goes up to $20,450 per
parents choose where their children attend. Demographics firm Population and Sur- vey Analysts reports only 2% of students in CFISD’s boundar- ies attended private schools in 2021-22. Public school impacts Statewide public education advocacy nonprofit Raise Your Hand Texas was founded 17 years
“WE ARE BEGGING FOR ANY MORSEL OF ADDITIONAL FUNDING FOR PUBLIC SCHOOLS, AND WHERE VOUCHERS COME IN IS THEY DO
THE OPPOSITE.” LAURA YEAGER, DIRECTOR OF JUST FUND IT TX
ago primarily to push back against the voucher movement happening in the Texas Legislature at the time, Senior
year, about two-and-a-half times more than what the voucher would cover. State Rep. Tom Oliverson, R-Cypress,
For more information, visit communityimpact.com .
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THERE IS ALWAYS SOMEONE THAT CARES.
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WWW.CYFAIRFD.ORG @CYFAIRFD • #CYFAIRFD
CY-FAIR EDITION • MAY 2023
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