On August 31, 2017, the Evidence-Based Funding for Student Success Act, or Public Act 100-0465 became law. Five previous grant programs are combined into a single grant program and distributed as evidence-based funding. Those grant programs are General State Aid, Special Education – Personnel, Special Education – Funding for Children Requiring Special Education Services, Special Education – Summer School and English Learner Education.
Districts receive the same amounts from these grant programs as they did in the year prior to the new law. That hold harmless provision is known as the Base Funding Minimum. In addition, districts receive funding based on their assignment to one of four tiers, which represent a ranking of their capacity to meet expectations.
In FY 2019, the Base Funding Minimum (BFM) consists of three components – the FY 18 BFM amount, the FY 18 tier funding amount and the FY 18 additional English Learner funding. In addition to the BFM, districts receive a share of $300 million in funding distributed through the tiers, with the greatest share of funding going to those districts with the greatest need for assistance.
Beginning in FY 19, there is also $50 million reserved for a new property tax relief grant program. More details about this grant will be available in the weeks ahead. Any funds not used for tax relief grants will be distributed through the tier system in the spring.