Bureau Brief – Chapter 70 Reform

The Massachusetts Education Reform Act of 1993, codified under Chapter 70 of the Massachusetts General Laws, was adopted to ensure that every child in the Commonwealth had access to an adequately funded public school education. The Act defined and measured educational output and identified a level of district funding necessary to meet those standards. The Act incorporated a funding formula that considers the socio-economic make-up of different schools and districts, resulting in the “foundation budget.” Yet the formula has not been changed in two decades, despite rising costs in key areas. Many school districts and education advocates, in Worcester and beyond, argue that the formula no longer represents the actual cost of educating students and are currently contemplating measures—from lawsuits to legislation—to force an update to Chapter 70.


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