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Fitchburg, MA: Districts spending millions over budget for SPED

Jan 9, 2019, Fitchburg (MA) Sentinel and Enterprise: School supts. make case at FSU forum Revamping the state's formula to fund public schools would address inequity across districts, superintendents from across the region said at a Tuesday forum…. School, municipal, and state leaders gathered at Fitchburg State University to advocate for changes to how the state funds education. … Special education and health insurance are two areas where districts have had to pay more. Leominster's foundation budget for special education was $6.7 million, but it actually spent $15.7 million -- a $12.7 million gap. In Fitchburg, the city spent $11.8 million on special education, which was about $5.7 million more than the foundation budget determined. Jokela said money that could have gone to instructional materials and computers had to be funded by school choice and grants because the district needed to use that money elsewhere…. Superintendents from the panel echoed similar challenges and trends with spending. …

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