Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Four Cities at MASBO

The Four Cities presentation comes to MASBO this morning, with a beginning on the MassBudget July report on Foundation Budget Review Commission implementation, followed by Brockton, Holyoke, Springfield, and Worcester speaking on the gaps. 
Brian Allen, Worcester: started with Brockton and Worcester, added Holyoke and Springfield
have talked to about twelve superintendents so far on how to calculate these slides
going to do essentially the same presentation, spending gaps on special ed and health insurance and the impact on those districts
not keeping pace with health insurance costs; $1B more than what was being provided
special ed likewise
"finally after years of advocacy, the state created the Foundation Budget Review Commission" in 2015
"the formula as we know it is 25 plus years old; it's dated and it's time for an update"
four main findings of the Foundation Budget : health insurance, special education, ELL, low income
you guys know this, right?

average per pupil exceeds foundation, even upon adoption of recommendations, by $700M
(thus when you see gaps versus implementation, those will be two different numbers, and implementation doesn't fully fill the gaps)

note that in every case, the districts are also reviewing how they've worked to control costs
Brockton: $7.3M gap in health insurance
$22.1M gap in special ed
Holyoke: $6.2M gap in health insurance
$12.4M in special ed
Springfield: $32.1M gap in health insurance (and they're in the GIC)
$35.4M in special ed
Worcester: "to continue the broken record, but that's intentional" $34.9M gap in health insurance
$34.6M in special ed

increasing increment of low income 50-100%
ELL increment (from fixed rate)

Allen: "so what does this mean for communities?"
"if you only spend at or near foundation, cummulatively we're spending $185M less on something else"

Brockton: short 414 regular ed teachers

Holyoke: short 161 regular ed teachers

Springfield: short 744 regular ed teachers

Worcester: short 773 regular ed teachers
"the money has to come from some place"

Colin Jones MassBudget: state budget is "just a bill that happens to have $45 billion dollars in it"
hearing that something is coming this year, "we'll have to see what this looks compared to full implementation"
"I think it's shifted...it's a shift in the conversation" noting Secretary Peyser's comment yesterday
Backbone of how this works: provide the support for the changes made
trajectory is going down
FY19 increase "it's 1% when you account for inflation" so that isn't "so much money"
none of the big ticket items (FBRC, preschool, higher ed) are really advancing
"districts that have the capacity are spending twice foundation"

"we're running out of patience to get this solved"
the Commission's report is the official state document on getting this done
"and every single year that we don't do, we don't follow our own constitution"

MassBudget's model for implementation
includes the four major pillars: updating health care, special education, support for ELL, low income
phase in means it takes time to get there
"nobody loses!"
"one of the big takeaways is that low income is two thirds of the whole thing...you're not dealing with equity if you don't deal with it"

And coming up:

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