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The Massachusetts Board of Elementary and Secondary Education

To:
Members of the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education
From:
Mitchell D. Chester, Ed.D., Commissioner
Date:
May 11, 2011

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The House of Representatives has finalized its Fiscal Year 2012 Budget Recommendations. The House budget plan is based on $20.525 billion in tax collections, $700 million over the current fiscal year estimate. The Department's (ESE) total FY12 funding proportionally reflects this projected increased revenue base for the Commonwealth.

The House FY12 total budget recommendation for ESE of $4.486 billion represents an increase of $219 million above the FY11 spending authority (General Appropriations Act (GAA) and FY11 Supplemental Budget) of $4.267 billion. The House floor debate added $5.3 million in additional departmental spending authorization. The appropriation levels recommended by the House for increases are consistent with budget priorities identified by the Board. The bulk of this increase relates to Chapter 70 (7061-0008), which accounts for $139.3 million, and the special education Circuit Breaker program (7061-0012), $80 million.

The following summarizes the House budget in relation to the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education's budget priorities for FY12:

Secure Funding for Local School Districts

  • The House has recommended $3.991 billion for Chapter 70 state aid (7061-0008), representing an increase of $139.3 million over FY11 and $0.3 million above House 1. This significant increase ensures that all districts will continue to receive at least their foundation level of funding. It does not, however, offset the loss of the $200 million one-time federal Education Jobs grants that districts received in FY11 as a supplement to Chapter 70 state aid. The net result is a reduction of two percent in overall Chapter 70 (state + federal) funding. Some districts may see larger cuts, while others may see smaller cuts or even increases, depending on their foundation budget requirements. Many districts are already planning to carry over a portion of their Education Jobs grant into FY12 to help mitigate this situation.

  • The House recommends an increase of $80 million in the special education Circuit Breaker program (7061-0012), which, similar to the Chapter 70 foundation aid situation, was supplemented in FY11 (and FY2010) by ARRA IDEA federal funding (approximately $280 million over the course of the 2 years). The Circuit Breaker recommendation returns the FY12 funding level to $213 million, nearly that of FY2009, which was $215 million. This recommendation is consistent with House 1.

  • The House provides an increase of $1.66 million for Charter School Tuition Reimbursements (7061-9010) and authorizes ESE to retain up to 1% of tuition payments to support the increased demands on the Charter School Office.

  • The House supports the Reserve for Shortfall of Federal Impact Aid, 7061-0033, established in FY11 in the amount of $1.3 million.

Reinstate MCAS History and Social Science Test Requirement

  • The House did not provide funding to reinstate this requirement.

Increase Funding for English Language Learner Programs

  • The House level funded this account (7027-1004) at $0.365M.

Consolidated Literacy Line Item Account

  • The House did not support the consolidation of the three literacy accounts into the Consolidated Literacy Program (7010-0033). The programs are level funded at the FY11 appropriation levels.

Ensure ESE Capacity to Close the Proficiency Gaps and Manage Programs

  • Supports to Close the Achievement Gap (7061-9404) are level funded at the House 1 value of $9.6 million. This reflects an increase of $0.561 million from our FY11 level.

  • Targeted Assistance to Schools and Districts (7061-9408) is funded at the House 1 value of $7.7M. This reflects an increase of $0.951 million from our FY11 level.

  • The House level funded the Office of School and District Accountability at the FY11 value of $0.939 million. There is no additional funding for more district performance reviews.

  • The Department's main administration account is level funded at $12.676 million.

  • Special Education in Institutional Settings (7028-0031) is below its FY11 level by $0.130 million.

  • The Educator Certification (7061-9604) account is replaced by the Teacher Certification Retained Revenue (7061-9601) account and is level funded at our FY11 spending level of $1.367 million.

Other Account Information

  • The House did not support the House 1 increase of $0.290 million for the School Breakfast Program. It is level funded at the FY11 appropriation of $4.1 million.

  • The METCO account (7010-0012) was funded at its FY11 funding level of $17.6 million.

  • The YouthBuild Programs (7061-9626) and Alternative Education (7061-9614) were level funded in the final House recommendation.

  • Connecting Activities (7027-0019) was not funded in the House recommendations; however, a FY11 supplemental funding level of $2M will be carried forward into FY12.

  • The remaining ESE accounts are basically level funded at the FY11 amounts.

The attached chart compares the House FY12 budget to the current FY11 spending and the Governor's House 1 recommendations. Variances are identified by appropriation.

If you have any questions regarding this budget, please feel free to call me.

Enclosure

Download MS EXCEL Document
FY12 Final House Budget and the Variance to the FY12 House Ways and Means Budget, May 2011


Last Updated: May 17, 2011
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