Last week, Gov. Bill Lee made a so-called “major” announcement about plans to reform the state’s school funding formula – the BEP. I’ll have more on this development later.
For now, though, here’s the statement from Tennessee Education Association (TEA) President Beth Brown:
“The Tennessee Education Association supports Gov. Lee’s intent to engage educators, parents and community members in a critical evaluation of the state’s education funding formula. However, the central problem with education funding is not the BEP, but the inadequate level of state funding.
Tennessee ranks 46th in the nation for what we invest per student. It is irresponsible and harmful to Tennessee children to continue the pattern of insufficient state investment in our schools, especially at a time when Tennessee has the largest revenue surpluses in state history. We can and must do better for our students.
Any review of the BEP funding formula must include more than recommendations on how to change the formula. Until the state makes a significant increase in public education funding to address many challenges plaguing our schools, updating a formula will not get us where we need to be to provide the high-quality public education Tennessee children deserve.”
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