Missouri officials seek fix for school funding formula

Thursday, June 7, 2012 | 12:03 p.m. CDT; updated 12:55 p.m. CDT, Thursday, June 7, 2012

JEFFERSON CITY — Missouri education officials are planning to adjust the underfunded state formula for distributing money to schools, with a goal of preventing drastic swings of money among the state's districts.

The formula includes a target for the amount to be spent educating each student. That target was scheduled to increase, but the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education will keep it at the current rate.

The available money will be distributed to districts, but officials anticipate it still will fall 8 to 9 percent short. The funding target would not be increased until that shortfall closes.

State education officials say it is their least disruptive option.

Missouri lawmakers had said addressing the underfunded school formula was a priority but could not reach agreement about possible changes before adjourning last month.

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