School Funding Fairness

The ability of state school finance systems to fairly deliver resources to students is an essential precondition for the delivery of high quality education. States must provide a sufficient level of funding that is fairly distributed to address the additional needs generated by poverty, English language learner status, student disabilities, and other special needs. Schools educating students with these needs require additional funding to support the programs and services that will provide all students with the opportunity to succeed. 

Rigorous school finance research is needed to provide convincing evidence that fair school funding is the central building block of an effective school system. Such research needs to clearly establish the relationship between state funding systems, the equitable distribution of school resources, and student outcomes.

In recognition of this need, researchers at Rutgers Graduate School of Education and Education Law Center created the “Is School Funding Fair?” project to:
      • provide tools for advocates and policymakers to effectively communicate rigorous research to
        influence positive changes in state school finance policy;
      • provide researchers with open access to the datasets that are the foundation of the school finance research on this site and encourage further exploration;
      • build consensus on the methods for evaluating and comparing state school finance systems and the resulting inequalities in resources and outcomes

On this website you can find: the award-winning report, “Is School Funding Fair? A National Report Card” and all related materials, such as interactive reports, press releases, and media mentions; related publications on school finance equity; and open access to compiled data sets and code for further analysis.