Theresa Hartman November 7, 2001 Presentation Edu 4565                  

729 words - 3 pages

Theresa Hartman November 7, 2001 Presentation EDU 4565 "Your Schools, Your Money" Former Governor Tom Ridge believed in empowering taxpayers with useful information to help them make informed decisions about their public schools and to better hold schools accountable to the students, parents and communities they serve. The 2000-01 budget includes $2.5 million to fund the development of an independent school-evaluation tool that analyzes schools? academic and financial data and provide impartial and understandable findings on financial and academic performance. This tool, which will be developed by Standard and Poor?s using public data and information, will enable taxpayers to compare and evaluate their schools on a local, regional, and statewide basis in the attempt to help school leaders and educators make curricular and management decisions based on its findings. In addition, former Governor Ridge has invested in two other programs to hold schools accountable for the money they spend. Ridge has invested $1.45 million in the "Your Schools, Your Money" project to help track down how much money is spent in each school building by grade level in elementary schools and by subject matter in secondary schools. "Your Schools, Your Money" uses web-based technology to provide easily understandable and consistent financial information for taxpayers and school administrators. This tool allows taxpayers to access financial information of their school through the web. It also allows all school administrators to better analyze and track the financial data collected by this tool. Hopefully, "Your Schools, Your Money" will help educators, administrators, parents, and taxpayers to better their schools.For many reasons, from local to state to national levels, the desire to "demystify" school finance and communicate information in a user-friendly format has grown over the last several years. It is important to remember that citizens have invested a great deal of their resources and money into our school systems, and they wish to see how their money is spent and how their resources are used. To tackle the task of compiling financial data into a "usable" tool, the Pennsylvania Department of Education enlisted more than 50 volunteer local education agencies (consisting of school districts, intermediate units, and vocational technical schools) to work collaboratively over a two-year pilot program to...

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