Lawmakers look at reviving Pa. school funding formula

    A plan that could get lawmakers back to doling out education funding based on a formula has passed Pennsylvania’s House.

    The measure would create a commission to study education funding and recommend a funding formula.A resulting formula would only apply to any funding increases, and it would be up to the Legislature to enact.

    Lawmakers briefly relied on a funding formula drafted to smooth out disparities among school districts.

    It hasn’t been used since Gov. Tom Corbett took office, and House Minority Leader Frank Dermody said it should return.

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    “All of us should lament the fact that we even need this bill, we even need to pass this bill,” he said. “It’s a sad commentary on our state that we have to once again try to establish a fair and equitable funding formula for basic education and our 500 school districts.”

    The Republican measure passed with overwhelming, bipartisan support.

    Still, House lawmakers spent more than half an hour rehashing their debate over cuts to education, which Republicans attribute to the end of federal stimulus funding.

    The Corbett administration could have avoided the cuts, Democrats maintain.

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