Over 30 years ago, the State adopted two formulas to recognize the additional cost to educate children in a small school district. These additional costs were determined to be significant enough that the State established a cost-based multiplier of .0004 for small school districts in Texas. Small schools were defined in statute as those with 1600 or fewer students.
For purely political reasons, a second formula was put into statute that penalized small school districts of less than 300 square miles by lessening their multiplier (.00025). There was no basis for establishing this second, punitive formula or funding these certain small districts at a lower level.
The most efficient solution to this decades-old inequity is to simply remove the punitive small schools formula and fund all small schools at the same state-recognized, cost-based level (.0004).
Resources For Texas' Small School Districts
- NEW! Interactive SDA Map
- NEW! SDA districts adopted resolutions list
- TARS SDA penalty resolution
- Equity Center SDA penalty resolution
- FY 16 SDA Report (Updated 10.10.2016)
- Excel Report with ATR (Updated 11.1.2016)
- Excel Report by House & Senate District (Updated 11.1.2016)
- Removing the Punitive Small Schools Formula - Talking Points
- Sample Op Ed
- Effects of Recession Still Felt in Rural Counties
- Righting the Wrong - PowerPoint Presentation
- Texas Small/Rural Schools and the Diseconomy of Scale
During the 2015 legislative session, members of both the Senate and House of Representatives filed legislation to address this 30+ year-old punitive formula. We anticipate similar legislation will be filed once again during the 2017 legislative session. For more information please contact our office.