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Date Posted: 07:23:51 01/05/10 Tue
Author: Larry
Subject: The main problem is the amount isn't equal
In reply to: jim d 's message, "Larry, How do you figure??" on 15:35:26 01/04/10 Mon

I canít find out how the Charter Commission came up with the number they did, so I can only explain why itís wrong.

GCPS is 51.6% locally funded. This is, as I understand it, the factor the commission should have used to determine what would have been the local funding for Ivy Prep students had they stayed in a GCPS school. There are two problems with this method.

First, Gwinnettís QBE funding total reflects a reduction for the 5 mill buy-in, a little over 18% where Ivy Prepís total does not. This makes sense for the actual amount Ivy Prep receives because they canít levy a local tax, but it distorts the local funding ratio. The 51.6% is calculated on what GCPS actually receives, which is 18% less than what Ivy Prep receives. Applying this ratio to what Ivy Prep actually did receive in QBE earnings seriously inflates the apparent amount GCPS would have spent on these kids had they stayed in a Gwinnett school.

The second problem is the same problem that occurs whenever you calculate a per capita number over an entire school population, which is that it ignores the fact the SpEd kids are far more expensive to educate. Without getting too detailed, itís clear that Ivy Prepís student population has a much lower percentage of SpEd students that GCPS because the QBE per capita funding amount, the easiest place to see this effect, is $1100 less than GCPS.

Now that youíve read all this, feel free to ignore it. Even using these inflated numbers, the state still deducted far too much from Gwinnett.

Ivy Prepís per capita QBE earnings are $2483 for FY2010. At 51.6% local funding, this calculates to a total per student expense of $5130, which includes a local funding amount of $2647 per student. What the state actually deducted from GCPS was not $2647, but $3935 per student Ė almost $1300 more per student than GCPS would have spent on them had they stayed in a Gwinnett school.

This is well over $280,000 that would have never been spent on these kids which was deducted from GCPS funding and given to Ivy Prep. There are now 55 kids in Gwinnett schools where we have nothing Ė no state, no federal, no local Ė funds to educate them because the state gave it to 216 Ivy Prep students.

Iím not willing to wait and see what happens when the Charter School population gets into the thousands.

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