The first installment of “Follow The Money” deals with money that is diverted to non-public schools. A short primmer.
Did you know that there are over 400 non public schools in Indiana and more than 100 in Indianapolis alone?
They have their own association, Indiana Non Public Education Association, to advocate for its membership before the State Legislature. Their purpose is to secure increased funding for non public schools and secure legislative support for non public schools. Their support and pressure has resulted in huge amounts of taxpayer dollars being diverted to non public schools with little or no accountability on how that tax money is spent.
How much money are we talking about?
Last year $162 million went for vouchers, the largest voucher program in the United States and an additional $279 million for charter schools. Total that and it amounts to $441 million dollars flowing to non public schools just last year, and that dollar amount is growing rapidly while many public schools struggle with the funding formula and declining state support or small increases. This year Governor Holcomb and members of the state legislature are talking about 2% increase in new money for each of the next 2 years. What they don’t tell you is that is an average, some school corporations will exceed 2% new money and many will receive much less, at the same time non-public reap even more funding.
Check with your local school board members or superintendent for your local numbers. Last year the Jay School Corporation, which I retired from received 1/2 % increase in new money.
The funding formula is not fair for many school corporations and again the state is sitting on nearly $2 billion of uncommitted money.
Check your local numbers.