Published: January 6, 2005
The Education Cost Sharing grant is the foundation formula used in Connecticut to distribute education revenue to districts. In fiscal 2004, the ECS grant, with over $1.5 billion, provided about two-thirds of total state aid for education. The grant is calculated based on a foundation level, each town’s fiscal capacity, and a weighted student enrollment. The foundation level is set annually by the legislature and is $5,891 per weighted student for fiscal 2005. Towns with the lowest property values receive as much as 90 percent of the foundation level from state aid, while the wealthiest districts receive at least 6 percent, which is the minimum aid rate in Connecticut. Enrollment is weighted for low-income students, English-language learners, and those who need remedial education. Districts in Connecticut do not have a minimum required tax levy to receive state aid, but they must meet a minimum-expenditure requirement. If a district does not do so, the state can withhold ECS grant money for twice the amount of the expenditure shortfall. To receive state aid, districts also must keep a 180-day or 900-instructional-hour school year and provide special education programs and transportation for students.
Vol. 24, Issue 17, Page 62