Texas plan for education funding


Detailed paper that describes and evaluates their state’s public education finance plan. APA style- ALL ORIGINAL THOUGHT…they check for copying!
Please google Texas plan for school funding and analyze what you find in a master’s level paper. Four FULL pages PLEASE

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Texas Plan for Education Funding

Education in the US is provided through public and private institutions. Private schools also known as independent schools are funded by charging tuition fees on student (Boyles, 2001). These schools are free to design their policies and select their staff through internal mechanisms. On the other hand, public schools are funded through government funding which is administered by local, state and/or federal government. This funding is obtained from mandatory taxation and other sources of public revenue such as loans and grants. With more than two thirds of the population attending public schools, funding in this section of the education system is crucial and requires planning and transparency to ensure that all students are given the right value for money. The purpose of this paper is to analyze public education planning and funding in the state of Texas. Focus will be on the plan’s organization, sources of revenue and the effectiveness of education funding distribution in Texas.


At the outset, it is important to understand the concept of public education funding before analyzing the funding plan of Texas. Notably, the federal government does not directly fund public education. Even so, it does distribute a certain amount of funding but holds no direct legislation over the distribution and allocation of these funds (Kincheloe & Horn, 2001). State governments are majorly in charge of collecting, accounting and distributing the collected funds. They are often collected through income tax, property tax and state sales. Local governments through taxation, also contribute towards this revenue in order to promote education. With an estimated annual tuition cost of $12,000 per student, the education system is locked in constant efforts to create transparency while simultaneously creating quality and value that equals for this money (Kincheloe & Horn, 2001).

In Texas, the planning and distribution of funds is determined by the Foundation School Program under the Texas Education Agency (TEA). This program has ensured that all the public school districts are able to receive the same amount of funding per student regardless of the district’s wealth. Until it was ruled unconstitutional in 2005, the Senate Bill 7 of 1993 had acquired the name Robin Hood due to its system of operation. It operates by taking property revenue from richer districts and promptly redistributing it to the poorer ones. This process has been automated through the compulsory merging of a poor and rich district as partners. This reform led to the introduction of business and cigarette tax.

TEA has no jurisdiction over private and charter schools in Texas. It role, therefore, is limited to the primary and secondary schools in the state (Kincheloe & Horn, 2001). With Mike Morath as the current Commissioner of Education, TEA’s primary focus is to oversee all the schools in the state and ensure that their operation proceeds as stipulated and expected. The agency deals with issues that threaten to compromise the quality of education. They have clear and established methods to combat mismanagement, financial challenges and poor test performance (Hall, 2006). In these cases, TEA will often employ and send regulators to oversee those particular areas, and their role usually entails observing operations, identifying faults or weaknesses and collectively designing meaningful solutions. After a solution has been selected and verified, it is rolled out under the supervision of the regulator who then monitors its progress and performance (Burke, 1990). TEA also regulates other aspects of the education such as drivers’ courses which are integrated into the curriculum.

The Board of Education under the TEA is made up of fifteen members who are elected from individual districts. The Board is allowed to set academic expectations for the public schools even though individual schools are allowed more institutional freedom such as selection of their reading material. Under the direction of the board, the TEA is further devolved into Educational Service Centers which serve the educational regions laid out in Texas.

The roles of the TEA are focused on distribution, assessment, accountability, data collection and operations. Through a detailed and transparent process, the agency is in charge of administering the funding to the public schools. This follows the predetermined budgets as well as the development needs of the schools. This step is then followed by the implementation of accountability systems that follow the funding immediately it is disseminated and throughout its operationalization. Besides, the TEA also operates alongside the State Board of Operation (SBOE) to develop the curriculum and apply it to all the schools in the state. This curriculum must align with the national educational requirements to ensure that the education system at the national level covers the same material and attains the same level of quality (Paris, 2010). In addition, the agency initiates the administrative functions for the State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) in addition to foreseeing the general administration and data collection procedures and promoting effective compliance with the statutory and federal laws concerning education and funding.

On the other hand, the Foundation School Program (FSP) provides the primary platform for funding distribution in the United States. Costs and operations are supported through two mechanisms: Tier 1 and Tier 2 (Paris, 2010). Tier 1 is formula- and mathematical-oriented, and it is obtained by multiplying the state allotment, targeted education and the projected impact. The resulting amount is then compared to the target revenue for deficit or surplus. If it does not meet or surpass the target revenue then more funding is provided to the district. Tier 2 funding is a complex procedure that is collected through guaranteed yield per penny of the property tax that is usually in excess of the rate used to sum up Tier 1.


Meanwhile, wealth Equalization is huge component and function of the FSP. School districts with property value that exceeds the determined levels are given a variety of options to deal with the situation. Some of these options include consolidating with another school, transferring their property to another school, purchasing credits from the state, or merging tax bases with another school. Most school prefer to merge with other schools or purchase credits from the state. The FSP guides the schools on the most suitable method based on the institutional and operational factors influencing their operations.

Overall, the state of Texas has been hailed as one of the most organized and transparent states in terms of public funding. It is the first state in terms of the number of functional school districts and second in the highest number of student enrolment at public schools (Paris, 2010). Texas’ education funding has also led to the growth of the financing alternatives at the tertiary level with many prepaid packages that offer future-oriented education at current prices. This is an extremely effective strategy considering the cost of university education increases by 6% annually (Kincheloe & Horn, 2001). This success should be attributed primarily to the effective collaboration between the FSP and the TEA in synchronizing their operations to promote wealth equalization, sustainability of public education and strengthened quality of education offered in the state.


Boyles, D. (2005). Schools or Markets? Commercialism, Privatization and School-Business Partnerships. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Burke, F. (1990). Public Education: Who’s In Charge? New York, NY: Praeger.

Hall, J. (2006). The Dilemma of School Finance Reform. TheJournal of Social, Political and Economic Studies, 31(2), 19-34.

Kincheloe, J and Horne, R. (2001). American Standards: Quality Education in a Complex World, the Texas Case. New York, NY: Peter Lang.

Paris, M. (2010). Framing Equal Opportunity: Law and the Politics of School Finance Reform. Stanford, CA: Stanford Law Books.

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