Public Schools Foot the Bill for Facility Costs
State support for funding school facilities has plummeted to seven percent in 2017 from 45 percent in 2001.1
Districts have their hands tied in raising taxes for facilities like classrooms and science labs. The state restricts how much debt a school district can finance for facilities. Under these restrictions, 34 districts are barred from funding new facilities.2
Fast growth districts – which enroll a minimum of 2,500 students and experience ten percent growth in a five-year period with an increase of 3,500 students or more – educate a third of Texas students and over 78 percent of new Texas students in 2016.3 Most of these districts do not qualify for state aid for facilities because that funding is for districts with extremely low property values, so they’re left to handle space constraints on their own.
1 Fast Growth School Coalition. (2018, Jan.) Economic Impact Analysis: Fast-Growth School Districts in Texas; Legislative Budget Board FY 2017-2019. 2 Fast Growth School Coalition (2017). Myths & Realities. 3 Fast Growth School Coalition. (2018, Jan.) Economic Impact Analysis.
The Center for Public Policy Priorities produced this analysis in 2018, with support from the Texas Education Grantmakers Advocacy Consortium (TEGAC).