Why Educational Budgets Should Be Aligned With Student Performance

Odden and Picus (2004) states the funding for school districts should not be about money or whether the base funding is equal or not, it should be about education equality and\or student achievement. In my opinion, funding should be student centered with student achievement as the goals and outcomes of the financing. Without student achievement, the entire funding system and goals of the school district are flawed and should be restructured to put the student first and other considerations after that. Educational equality should be a natural component to the goals of a district and at the same time student achievement goals should be aligned with them.

Having set student achievement as a goal, according to Odden and Picus (2004) there are several factors that contribute to that goal. These are what curriculum, incentive, instruction, capacity development and management strategies are going to sufficient to meet the goal. The overall funding issue is what is what level of funding for each of these programs will not only make the goal successful in each program and in the overall picture. Odden and Picus (2004) cites Hanushek and Associates, (1994) when adding that the short comings found in state education finance systems is low levels of system performance which in turn produces low student achievement.

Odden and Picus (2004) go further by stating that equity is still the issue of today for most school budgets and they see that adequacy and productivity will arise above equity when legal and ethical issues are brought up. They recommend that educators learn how to transform the dollars coming into the system into viable success in goals of student achievement. They continue by informing that in the future, even though student achievement goals are met, adequacy might be under rated and equity will rise once again.

Odden, A. and Piccus, L. (2004) School Finance: A Policy Perspective. McGraw-Hill. Retrieved from course materials on May 26, 2009 from PDF download.

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