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Massachusetts Charter Schools

Projected FY2025 Charter School Tuition and Enrollment

The following early rate projections are provided to assist Commonwealth charter schools and school districts with their budget preparations for FY2025. These estimates are based on the House Ways and Means (HWM) budget and reflect the passage, in November 2019, of An Act Relative to Educational Opportunity for Students, commonly known as the Student Opportunity Act (SOA). The SOA makes significant changes to the foundation budget rate formula, based on the recommendations of the Foundation Budget Review Commission (FBRC). The updated formula is codified in Chapter 70 of the general laws.

These estimates are subject to change as the House and Senate deliberate on the budget, and as we update our enrollment projections for the next fiscal year.

Key points on foundation budget rates:

  • These rates are derived from each school's October 1, 2023 SIMS enrollment.

  • Foundation budgets have been raised by a 1.35% inflation factor.

  • Some additional highlights:

    • The SOA establishes new, higher foundation budget rates in five areas: benefits and fixed charges, guidance and psychological services, special education out-of-district tuition, English learners, and low-income students, all to be phased in over a seven-year period.
    • An employee benefits inflation rate of 5.03% is applied to the employee benefits and fixed charges category. This rate is based on the three-year average premium increase for all Group Insurance Commission (GIC) plans.
    • The SOA also increases the assumed in-district special education enrollment from 3.5% to 4.0% for non-vocational students over seven years. The factor used in FY2025 is 3.93%.

Key points on above foundation and facilities rates:

  • Above foundation rates are determined using the most recently available budgeted net school spending percentages from March 2024.

  • Facilities rates are level funded at $1,188 per pupil.

Key points on charter reimbursement to districts:

  • HWM has recommended a $199.0 million appropriation for charter school tuition reimbursements. This appropriation level is expected to meet the 100% requirement in FY2025.

Below you will find links to workbooks housing the FY2025 charter school tuition and reimbursements based on the frameworks above. These amounts will be used by the Department of Revenue (DOR) in their preliminary cherry sheet estimates.


Questions about the charter tuition program should be addressed to Rob O'Donnell in the Office of District and School Finance at (781) 338-6512 or Robert.F.O'Donnell@mass.gov .

Last Updated: April 12, 2024

 
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