School Finance: School Choice
FY17 Final School Choice Tuition, June 2017
The school choice assessment and tuition amounts that will be incorporated into the June 30, 2017 local aid distribution have been finalized. On June 30th the State Treasurer's office will process the remaining portion of the annual assessments and tuition, net of the amounts paid in the monthly local aid distributions over the first eleven months of the fiscal year.
A district summary workbook lists all receiving and sending districts' full-time equivalent pupils and tuition amounts for the year. There were 190 receiving districts and 313 sending districts. There were 16,353 full-time equivalent pupils participating, with total tuition amounting to $99,975,747. After incorporating $40,355 of adjustments to FY16 tuition, the net tuition statewide is $99,935,392.
School Choice Tuition Rates are calculated for regular and vocational programs. FY17 school choice tuition rates are set at 75 percent of the FY16 operating cost per full-time equivalent pupil for the receiving school district, with a cap of $5,000. All districts are now at that cap. In addition, the actual special education cost for each pupil with an individualized education plan is paid in full by the sending district. That amount is determined using the same rate methodology for specific services as is used in the special education circuit breaker program.
In prior years the district summary showed a monthly breakdown of payments and assessments. However, a new report is available from the Division of Local Services which shows the monthly amounts for school choice and all other programs that are included in local aid distribution. The report can be found at Division of Local Services: Monthly Local Aid.
Sending and receiving district staff should review their final school choice rosters and tuition amounts for each student. The information has been placed in the ESE security portal's school choice claim form dropbox. These spreadsheets show each school choice pupil's name, address, enrollment dates, program, tuition and other information. School staff should contact ESE if they feel any of the information is not completely accurate so that follow-up can be done and, if necessary, adjustments can be made during FY18.
If you have any questions about this information, please contact Rob O'Donnell in the Office of District and School Finance at (781) 338-6512 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.