Kirwan Commission Recommends Only Incremental Steps for BCPS

This past Tuesday, the Ways and Means committee received a briefing on The Kirwan Commission’s preliminary report of its recommendations. Based on this report of initial findings, the funding formula only takes incremental steps in addressing the funding disparity for Baltimore City Public Schools students. In addition to other changes in the existing formula, the Commission will contemplate adding a weight for schools with high concentrations of students living in poverty (measured as 40 percent or more who are part of the reduced lunch program), but it does not yet adequately define the complexity of the context in which these students live. Additionally, the Commission must address the impact of tax increment financing (TIFs) on the school funding formula in order to ensure our students are not being punished for Baltimore’s inflated “wealth” due to TIFs.