Study: Funding System for Idaho Schools Imbalanced, Strays From Constitution



Mike Ferguson, the man who served as Idaho's chief economist for five Gem State governors, said Friday that not only is public school funding critically low, the current funding system may be in violation of the Idaho Constitution.

A 20-page report, issued through the Idaho Center for Fiscal Policy, where Ferguson serves as director, concludes that the current state system of funding K-12 eduction through sales taxes rather than property taxes may be violating the constitution's requirement to impose uniform taxes in order to "establish and maintain a general, uniform and thorough system of public, free common schools." Because of the current funding model's inadequacy, voters throughout Idaho have agreed to supplemental property tax levies to help fund public schools.

The study considered public school funding in Idaho from 1980 through the most recent budget for fiscal year 2013 approved by the Idaho Legislature.


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