Kentucky Thinktank Blasts State Education Department’s Release of Poor Quality School Spending Data

Kentucky Thinktank Blasts State Education Department’s Release of Poor Quality School Spending Data

November 16, 2020

In a new report, the Bluegrass Institute harshly criticizes the quality of school spending data recently released by Kentucky education officials as a 2018-19 requirement of the Every Student Succeeds Act. The report states that Kentucky’s data is too general to be useful, as the amounts individual schools are allocated and spend are only broken down into two categories each, making it impossible for parents, educators, or community members to identify how much a school dedicates to teacher salaries or what portion of a school’s budget comes from local funding sources, for example. Worse, the Bluegrass Institute also claims some data is simply incorrect, saying “the apparent lack of interest in fixing erroneous figures is disturbing.” The report recommends that Kentucky establish “an external civilian/researcher oversight committee to advise the board and the Kentucky Department of Education on how to make the school-level financial reports more useful and accurate.”