Summary of State Appropriations for Education 2015-2016 Fiscal Year
The following file contains a summary of the enacted funding levels for 2015-2016 Department of Education appropriations.
Basic Education Funding and Ready to Learn Block Grant
Upon enactment of House Bill 1460 as accepted by the Governor, we began the fair restoration of the most essential and significant components of severe cuts under the previous administration. These components are consistent with the proposed formula in the 2015-16 Executive Budget, and are part of the agreed-to hybrid funding formula that would have been fully enacted as part of the bipartisan framework budget agreement.
Basic Education Funding
While the Governor only accepted the first six months of the appropriation, the distribution assumes a restoration of the vetoed amount. As a base, each school district received the same amount it received in 2014-15. The $100 million remaining in the appropriation was used as follows: nearly $50 million was distributed to restore Education Assistance Program funding eliminated under the previous administration; $12 million was directed to the Chester-Upland School District to comply with the Financial Recovery Plan and settlement agreement as approved by the Delaware County Court of Common Pleas; $3 million was directed to Wilkinsburg Borough School District as required for their transition of high school students to Pittsburgh School District; and the balance was distributed as a pro-rata restoration of the Basic Education Funding cuts under the previous administration.
Ready to Learn Block Grant
The first $192 million was distributed to school districts in the same amount they received in 2014-15. The remaining appropriation was used to restore the charter school reimbursement program that was eliminated under the previous administration.
Special Education Funding
The enacted budget includes $1,076,815,000 for the 2015-2016 Special Education appropriation.
For the Special Education Funding component, new dollars after the 2013-2014 fiscal year will be distributed based on categories of support for students with disabilities.
The 2015-2016 Special Education appropriation also includes funding totaling approximately $82,519,000 for the following components: Special Education Contingency Fund, Core Services funding to intermediate units, Institutionalized Children’s Program funding, special education for wards of state students, and special education for students placed out of state.