How are school districts in Arkansas funded?

Arkansas is charged with providing an adequate and equitable education for all students in its public school system. The state’s funding formula was devised to accomplish that goal, taking into account both the basic needs of school districts as well as the additional costs relative to special populations of students. The Foundation Funding amount for 2012-2013 is $6,267 per child. Among other things, districts also receive $4,228 for students in Alternative Learning Environments, $305 per child for English Language Learners, $517 for each child in the National School Lunch program with greater amounts available for districts with higher concentrations of those children. Districts also receive federal funding. The public school funding bill is Act 1039 of 2011 and the Arkansas Code is A.C.A. § 6-20-2305.

The Arkansas Supreme Court in the 2007 Lake View decision found the state's school funding system to be in compliance with the state Constitution. That decision followed numerous legislative acts in response to the 2007 Lake View decision which found Arkansas's schools to be funded inadequately and inequitably.

For a history education reform in Arkansas prepared by the Bureau of Legislative Research, click here, and for key milestones in Lake View click here.


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