What is “adequate” school funding?
“Adequate” funding simply means funding that is sufficient to make available in every school those resources essential to give all students a meaningful opportunity to meet the outcomes that the State has set. Adequate funding for schools is so important that the Nevada State Constitution requires the Legislature to provide “adequate” or “suitable” support for public education.
According to the Nevada Constitution, the State must provide adequate education funding. The Legislature is also required to ensure that funding is used effectively and efficiently in schools. The Nevada Department of Education plays a key role in ensuring that the State’s education dollars are used productively and as intended by the Legislature.
Didn’t Nevada recently invest millions of additional dollars for education?
The increased education funds from the last two sessions have increased student achievement, however they are restricted-use funds and cannot be equated with increases in overall funding. Those funds cannot go towards general operating expenses such as increased transportation costs, employee salaries, maintenance etc. Furthermore, restricted-use funds are unreliable, as they must be reauthorized each session.
Are Nevada schools underfunded?
Nevada schools are grossly underfunded, and have been for decades. This underfunding deprives our schools of the resources that they need and is a major reason for low student outcomes. The neediest students, with the least resources at home, suffer the most because the Legislature has failed to modernize education finance. The Nevada Plan must be scrapped and a new formula put in place. Governor Brian Sandoval and legislative leaders acknowledge that Nevada’s school funding formula is outdated and inadequate, and must be changed. And even if the funding formula were changed today, the consequences of decades of failures as a result of the formula will continue to be felt for decades to come.
How can I get involved?
Become informed and engaged in the need for school funding reform. Join the campaign. Ask your friends, neighbors, parents, and fellow students join the campaign. If you are involved in a community organization, parent teacher association, or education organization, ENN needs your active participation.
You can also make a tax-deductible contribution to support our efforts.