Funding Basics 
Formula Type

Massachusetts has a hybrid funding formula incorporating both resourcebased and studentbased elements. The state assigns costs to the education of students in several different categories, derived from the resource costs associated with educating the students in each category.
The categories of students considered for the purposes of calculating resource costs in Massachusetts are students in certain grade levels, English language learners, students with disabilities, and students enrolled in career and technical education programs. The state also adds supplemental dollars to districts’ funding for lowincome students.
References:
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. FY15 Chapter 70 Aid. Malden, MA: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, July 2014.
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. FY15 Preliminary Chapter 70 and Net School Spending Formula Spreadsheet. Malden, MA: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, January 22 2014.
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. Redefining Low Income – A New Metric for K12 Education Data. Malden, MA: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, July 16, 2015.
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. The Massachusetts Foundation Budget. Malden, MA: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, July 8, 2016.

Base Amount

Massachusetts does not have a single, statewide base amount. Instead, it uses several funding amounts that are associated with different categories of students.
The state uses a formula that accounts for resource costs, and associates different costs with different categories of students. (Categories include regular and specialeducation students in different grades; students with limited English skills; and students in vocational education programs.)
The perstudent costs calculated for each category include those for teachers, staff benefits, materials, and professional development, among other resources.
References:
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. The Massachusetts Foundation Budget. Malden, MA: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, July 8, 2016.

Expected Local Share

Massachusetts expects school districts to contribute revenue to their public schools. The amount each district is expected to raise is based on a combination of its property values and its residents’ income.
The state sets a statewide target for the proportion of education funding to be covered by state and local funds: localities are expected to cover 59% of the statewide foundation budget, and the state is expected to cover 41%. However, the state and local shares of each district's individual foundation budget may be higher or lower than these targets. The state uses local property value and local income data, weighted equally, to determine the expectation for each community's local contribution. Actual tax rates are set locally, and localities may raise more or less than the expected amount.
References:
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. FY15 Chapter 70 Aid. Malden, MA: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, July 2014.
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. FY16 Chapter 70 and Net School Spending Formula Spreadsheet. Malden, MA: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, July 19, 2015.

Student Characteristics 
Grade Level

Massachusetts provides different amounts of funding for students in four different grade spans: kindergarten, elementary, junior high school or middle school, and high school.
The funding amounts are calculated based on the assumption that different resource needs apply to these different grade spans. Different amounts are assigned to other categories of students that are also tied to grade level, including special education students in each of these grade spans; lowincome students in grades 18 and grades 912; and secondary students in vocational programs.
References:
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. FY15 Preliminary Chapter 70 and Net School Spending Formula Spreadsheet. Malden, MA: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, January 22 2014.

English Language Learner

Massachusetts provides increased funding for English language learners (ELLs). It provides districts with a higher perpupil amount for ELLs in accordance with the assumption the education of ELLs is associated with aboveaverage resource costs.
The state uses a formula that accounts for some resource costs, and associates different costs with different categories of students, including students with limited English skills. (Other categories considered in the formula include regular and special education students in different grades and students in vocational education programs.)
The perstudent costs calculated for each category include those for teachers, staff benefits, materials, and professional development, among other resources. First, the total funding that a district requires for each category is calculated based on that category’s associated costs and the number of students counted in the category. Then, each district’s perstudent funding amount is derived by adding together its total funding figures for all the student categories and dividing the sum by the district’s total enrollment across all categories.
References:
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. FY15 Preliminary Chapter 70 and Net School Spending Formula Spreadsheet. Malden, MA: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, January 22 2014.

Student Poverty

Massachusetts provides increased funding for students from lowincome households. It does so in the form of a flat allocation for each lowincome student. Grants equal $3,422 per student in grades 18 and $2,767 per student in grades 912.
Students are eligible for this supplemental funding if they qualify for free or reducedprice lunch under the National School Lunch Program. The allocations are made in addition to the student’s perpupil base amount, which itself varies by grade level and academic services required, and are subject to the expected local contribution.
References:
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. Redefining Low Income – A New Metric for K12 Education Data. Malden, MA: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, July 16, 2015.
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. The Massachusetts Foundation Budget. Malden, MA: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, July 8, 2016.

Special Education

Massachusetts funds special education using a censusbased system, assuming that a set percentage of students in each district will require special education services and using each district’s full enrollment count to determine the amount of special education funding required.
The state assumes that indistrict special education placements will make up the fulltimeequivalent of 3.75% of district’s nonvocational education enrollment in grades 112, and the fulltimeequivalent of 4.75% of its vocational education enrollment. Outofdistrict special education placements are assumed to make up the fulltimeequivalent of 1% of enrollment. In FY2015, the state provided districts with $23,332 for each assumed, indistrict, specialneeds student and $26,461 for each assumed, outofdistrict, specialneeds student.
The remainder of state special education funding is distributed through specific programbased allocations, including aid to districts serving students imposing costs greater than four times the state average foundation budget per pupil (that reimbursement covers 75% of costs incurred above that threshold) and an “extraordinary relief” program that supports districts whose special education expenses see at least a 25% yearonyear increase.
References:
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. The Massachusetts Foundation Budget. Malden, MA: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, July 8, 2016.
Wulfson, Jeff. A Primer of Financial Aspects of Special Education. Malden, MA: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. October 30, 2008.

Gifted

Massachusetts does not provide additional resources for gifted and talented students.

Career and Technical Education

Massachusetts provides specific funding for career and technical education (CTE) programs. It provides districts with a higher perpupil amount for students enrolled in these programs in accordance with the assumption that CTE is associated with aboveaverage resource costs.
The state uses a formula that accounts for some resource costs, and associates different costs with different categories of students, including students with limited English skills. (Other categories considered in the formula include regular and specialeducation students in different grades and English language learners.)
The perstudent costs calculated for each category include those for teachers, staff benefits, materials, and professional development, among other resources. First, the total funding that a district requires for each category is calculated based on that category’s associated costs and the number of students counted in the category. Then, each district’s perstudent funding amount is derived by adding together its total funding figures for all the student categories and dividing the sum by the district’s total enrollment across all categories.
References:
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. The Massachusetts Foundation Budget. Malden, MA: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, July 8, 2016.

Community Characteristics 
District Poverty

Massachusetts does not provide increased funding based on the concentration of students from lowincome households in a particular district.

Sparsity and/or Small Size

Massachusetts does not provide increased funding for sparse districts or small schools.
