OKLAHOMA CITY – Sen. Jessica Garvin, R-Duncan, has filed legislation to help further improve accountability and transparency of local school district funding. Senate Bill 1126 would remove the carryover caps for school district general funds and require those carryover amounts be reported to the State Department of Education (SDE).
“It bothers me that our school funding formula penalizes districts for their carryover funds at the end of each fiscal year. This often forces districts to make impulse purchases, that aren’t necessarily needed, just so they don’t lose the funds. However, by allowing funds to be carried over, they could use their money more efficiently,” Garvin said. “This also would allow districts to create long-term strategic plans for improving educational outcomes, like facility upgrades, additional incentives for hiring and retaining teachers and support personnel, and investing in new technology.”
The bill would further modify the School District Transparency Act by adding school district carryover funds to the list of financial information to be published online by SDE. School district and school site expenditures of state, federal, and local funds are already available online.
“I’m excited to have worked on this important legislation with school leadership across Senate District 43, the Senate’s education policy expert, members of the State Board of Education and Education Secretary Ryan Walters.” Garvin said. “We need to untie our schools’ hands when it comes to their carryover funds and let them make responsible, thoughtful financial decisions based on their needs, not calendar deadlines.”
Sen. Garvin: (405) 521-5522 or Jessica.Garvin@oksenate.gov