Guided by Principles: Shaping the State of California’s Role in K-12 Public School Facility Funding

California’s K-12 public school facilities need regular investment to ensure student health and safety and support educational programming. For example, without adequate funding, facilities can fall into disrepair and lead to indoor air quality problems from faulty ventilation systems, mold due to water intrusion, etc.

But the future of K-12 school facility funding in California is uncertain. A strong state-local partnership has existed that funded new construction, modernization, and other investments in public school facilities across the state since 1998, under the School Facility Program (SFP). The Governor, members of the legislature and other key stakeholders have identified concerns about the state’s approach, but they have not yet formulated a consensus going forward on the state role and responsibilities for school district facilities. To inform the school facilities funding policy debate among the Governor, the state legislature and the public, Guided by Principles: Shaping the State of California’s Role in K-12 Public School Facility Funding provides an analysis of data on facilities spending by California school districts. Written by the Center for Cities and Schools, the brief proposes principles to guide policy decisions about the State of California’s facility funding role and provides data-driven indicators that can be used to evaluate the application of the principles. Finally, it offers approaches to a state and local partnership for K-12 facilities that would advance the principles of equity, local district accountability, fiscal stability and predictability, facility adequacy, and program simplicity. The report is available online.

 

Share