ESSA per-pupil reporting — a means to what end?

 

New ESSA reporting requirements illuminate per-pupil spending by school. This transparency is designed to empower districts to interrogate the funding methodologies that drive differences in spending. Follow the framework below to use your district’s ESSA financial reporting to evaluate (and improve) its funding model. 

 

1.
Report on per-pupil expenses

Consult your state’s ESSA plan for reporting criteria and formats. Use internal reporting processes or third-party tools to create your reports.

  • Who does it? Central office finance team
  • What’s the output? ESSA-compliant per-pupil expense reports

 

2.
Analyze per-pupil reporting

Review school differences in per-pupil spending and the resources that drive those differences. Do the differences help or harm outcomes?

  • Who does it? Cross-functional team (financial and programmatic senior leadership)
  • What’s the output? Written summary of findings

 

3.
Reconcile analysis with methodology

Articulate your allocation methodology and compare to reporting. Look for implementation fidelity and weaknesses in the funding model.

  • Who does it? Central office finance team, third-party partner
  • What’s the output? Action plan that addresses both policy and optics

 

4.
Act on the findings

Follow through on next-steps. Make changes to the funding model, revise policies to support current practice, or create new policies.

  • Who does it? Cross-functional team (financial and programmatic senior leadership)
  • What’s the output? New/revised district policy and resource allocation methodology

 

5.
Communicate with stakeholders

Craft the narrative about your reporting, analysis, and action plan with content for stakeholders. Emphasize your diligence and commitment.

  • Who does it? Superintendent, communications department, third-party partner
  • What’s the output? Stakeholder-facing material like press releases and presentations

 

 

ESSA per-pupil reporting ... a means to what end?
ESSA per-pupil reporting –
a means to what end?

 

More information on your state’s ESSA plan:

 

 

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