In 2014, APA was selected by the Maryland State Department of Education to conduct a follow-up to our 2002 Maryland finance study. This legislatively mandated study includes adequacy cost studies that identify a base funding level for students without special needs and per pupil weights for students with special needs to be applied to the base funding level, and an analysis of the effects of concentrations of poverty on adequacy targets. The adequacy cost study will be based on the Maryland College and Career Ready Standards (MCCRS) adopted by the State Board of Education and include two years of results from new State assessments aligned with the standards, which are scheduled to be administered beginning in the 2014-2015 school year.
There are several additional components included in the study. These components include evaluations of: the impact of school size, the Supplemental Grants program, the use of Free and Reduced Price Meal eligibility as the proxy for identifying economic disadvantage, the federal Community Eligibility Program in Maryland, prekindergarten services and funding, the current wealth calculation, and the impact of increasing and decreasing enrollments on local school systems. The study will also include an update of the Maryland Geographic Cost of Education Index.
APA is partnering with Picus Odden & Associates and the Maryland Equity Project at the University of Maryland to complete this three-year study.