Georgia’s K-12 Education Spending Increases as Enrollment Grows at a Higher Rate

Georgia’s spending per pupil has grown over the past two decades, but its enrollment has increased at a higher rate, a new analysis found.

According to the Reason Foundation’s 2022 K-12 Education Spending Spotlight, Georgia’s inflation-adjusted per-pupil K-12 revenues grew by 6.2% — or $803 per student — between 2002 and 2020. During that same period, enrollment increased by 18%.

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Reason Foundation Report Recommends Iowa Reduce Regulations in Telehealth Policy

Iowa should make a few public policy changes to improve telehealth services, which have become more common during the COVID-19 pandemic, policy analysts said in a report Reason Foundation released Wednesday.

Cicero Institute and Pioneer Institute Senior Fellow Josh Archambault and Reason Foundation Policy Analyst Vittorio Nastasi co-authored the state-by-state report, “Rating the States on Telehealth Best Practices: A Toolkit for a Pro-Patient and Provider Landscape.”

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Ohio’s Highway System Fails in National Rankings: Report

In a year, Ohio’s highway system fell from consideration as one of the best in the nation to average, based on a recently released report from the Reason Foundation.

The state ranked 13th in the nation a year ago in the report that analyzes overall cost-effectiveness, along with condition, fatality rates and time spent commuting. It remains above average, however, coming in at a 24th ranking in the nation in the most recent report.

“To improve in the rankings, Ohio needs to reduce its administrative disbursements or have those costs translate into better system performance. The state’s disbursements are three times higher than Ohio’s peer states. The state also needs to improve its urban arterial pavement condition,” said Baruch Feigenbaum, lead author of report and senior managing director of transportation policy at Reason Foundation. “Ohio’s administrative costs have increased significantly from the last report. The state’s three fatality rates have increased slightly as well.”

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Commentary: The First Step to Rightsizing Education Spending Is Reforming Teacher Pensions

In the past year, Congress has rushed more than $204 billion in federal emergency funds to states to support K-12 schools. 

But 23 states had fewer incoming students this fall. This declining enrollment is likely in part due to pandemic-related trends but is also a symptom of changing birth rates and families geographically relocating.

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Beyond Pension Debts, Michigan Owes $31 Billion in Public Employee Retirement Benefits

Net liabilities in Michigan for so-called other post-employment benefits (OPEBs), which consist mainly of health care obligations to retired public employees, stood at about $31 billion in fiscal year 2019, according to a new analysis from the Reason Foundation. 

With a population of 9,986,857, the state posted a per-capita OPEB liability of $3,099, which represents the 15th highest value among the 50 states and the District of Columbia, the Reason study found. 

In total, these liabilities amount to 6% of the U.S. gross domestic product, the researchers said. These debts are also geographically concentrated, with 15 government jurisdictions representing 50% of the total, the study found. 

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New Study Finds Detroit Charter Schools Receive 29 Percent Less Per Pupil than Traditional Public Schools

A new study from the University of Arkansas found the average disparity in per-pupil funding between traditional public schools and their public charter schools across 18 cities reached $7,796 per-pupil — a record high.

In Detroit, public charter schools educate over 40% of K-12 students.

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Tool Shows How Much Money is Locked Out of Michigan Classrooms Because of $40 Billion Pension Debt Service

A new tool reveals thousands of dollars per student each year is paying longstanding debt service rather than helping Michigan students prepare for a successful future.

Leonard Gilroy, vice president of the libertarian Reason Foundation and senior managing director of the Pension Integrity Project, told The Center Square that changing markets, underfunding below actuary recommendations, and the Great Recession has made it harder to hit investment targets for pension funds in the last few decades.

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