As the budgetary picture remains bleak for America's 14,000 schools, in the latest AEI Education Outlook director of education policy studies Rick Hess and researcher Whitney Downs propose that now is the time to fundamentally rethink education spending. With school budget problems set to only get worse in the next few years with the end of education stimulus money, lags in property tax revenue, states' growing Medicaid obligations, and underfunded pensions, minor fixes such as cutting bus service or having students be responsible for providing more classroom supplies are not the solution. Instead, Hess and Downs recommend that schools prepare themselves for the leaner years ahead by tightening up operations, rethinking staffing, and using technology smartly.
More about these recommendations can be found in Stretching the School Dollar (Harvard Education Press, 2010) edited by Rick Hess and Eric Osberg.
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