Michigan Voters Strongly Support Fair Funding for Kids

Overwhelming number of voters believe every student deserves the same level of state funding; GLEP urges legislature to eliminate $1,000 per pupil funding equity gap

Lansing, MI – According to survey data released today by the Great Lakes Education Project (GLEP), an overwhelming number of Michigan voters agree that every student should receive the same level of state support for their education.

Fair Funding Pie Chart

When told that roughly one half of students receive about $7,000 per year while the other half receives up to $8,000 or more a year, 87% of respondents agreed that every student in Michigan should receive the same level of state support for their education.

“This is tremendous support to address the serious opportunity gap in Michigan when one student is worth nearly $1,000 more than their next door neighbor,” said Gary Naeyaert, GLEP Executive Director. “We’ve made some progress since 1994 in closing the equity funding gap, but at our current rate it will be another 20 years before the gap is closed. We urge the Michigan Legislature to act more quickly to provide fair funding for every student, because our kids can’t wait,” Naeyaert continued.

GLEP is advocating that at least 90% of available state and local K-12 funding be used to provide per-pupil support in the School Aid Budget, leaving up to 10% for targeted investments. Doing so will provide a uniform foundation grant of $8,250 per pupil, eliminating the funding equity gap. The Michigan legislature is currently debating the FY 2014-15 School Aid Budget.

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Methodology: This survey was part of a Denno Research Periodic Survey of the Michigan electorate. 600 respondents in the state of Michigan were surveyed between March 9-10, 2014, with a margin of error of plus/minus 4%, and the participation was stratified based on census data and past voter behavior. 120 respondents (20%) were from cell phone users, in an attempt to gather younger voters who do not have a land line. A screen was employed to include only those participants who said they would vote, either at the polls or by absentee ballot, in the November 2014 General Election. All numbers are rounded and may exceed 100%. Visit www.dennoresearch.com or www.glep.org for additional details.