Colorado received poor grades in a national report released Monday from the Education Law Center that examined how fairly public schools are funded.
The state got a "C" grade when it comes to devoting extra resources to high poverty districts. The education reform group studied the funding gap between districts with high levels of poverty and those with low levels.
- June 3: Lawsuit says Colo. lawmakers cut education money despite constitutional amendment
- Jan. 14: Colorado per-pupil spending lags national average even more
States that graded well, like South Dakota, Delaware, Minnesota, and New Jersey — provide their highest-poverty districts, on average, with between 30 percent and 38 percent more funding per student than their lowest-poverty districts.
In another category, the report gave Colorado its lowest grade – an “F” – for “effort” – state and local education funding here accounts for 2.8 percent of the gross state product - just over half as much effort as the top states.
A companion report from the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights’ Education Fund adds that there are "vast inequities" in Colorado's school districts, created by "dependence on local property tax."
"This puts students at a major disadvantage simply because of where they live," the report says.
Editor's note: Due to an editing error, the original version of this story misidentified a quote from a companion report from the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights’ Education Fund. The error has been corrected.