Thompson Introduces Bill to Address Inequities in Federal Education Funding

July 12, 2011
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Representative Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson (R-PA) today formally introduced H.R. 2485, the All Children are Equal (ACE) Act, to a standing-room-only audience of reporters, education reform advocates, and supporting organizations. The ACE Act fixes a gross inequity in the way formulas are calculated under Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, which provides funds to local school districts in order to improve the education of disadvantaged students.  

The current formula has the perverse effect of diverting funding from higher poverty school districts to more populous school districts, regardless of the actual poverty rates. The ACE Act will be an equitable solution to ensure that all Title I eligible children will be treated equally under the law. 

“The ACE Act levels the playing field for impoverished students and ensures that funding is equitable in accordance with the original intent of the law,” said Thompson. “No child should be put at a disadvantage because of their geographic location or the size of their school, and the ACE Act will ensure that all children are truly treated in an equal manner.”

The ACE Act would gradually phase out the current number weighting system used to calculate Title I amounts, to assure that school districts are treated based upon their percentages of poverty, rather than population.   

"We must all recognize that a Title I eligible child should not be put at a disadvantage because of where he or she lives and how big or small their school district is – all children should be equal," added Thompson. “The ACE Act does not cost the taxpayer one dime and simply fixes a systemic flaw that keeps Title I funds from those most in need, including every single Title I eligible child in the 5th Congressional District.”

Representative Thompson formally introduced H.R. 2485 this morning with Representatives G. K. Butterfield (D-NC), Tom Petri (R-WI), Ruben Hinojosa (D-TX), Mike Kelly (R-PA), and Lou Barletta (R-PA). The bill has five additional original cosponsors, including Representatives Louise Slaughter (D-NY), Todd Russell Platts (R-PA), Dan Boren (D-OK), Richard Hanna (R-NY)and Mike Ross (D-AR). The ACE Act has the support of a diverse range of advocacy groups, which have rallied behind Thompson’s efforts. 

Supporting Organizations: Save the Children, American Association of School Administrators, National Alliance of Black School Educators, American Farm Bureau Federation, National Parent Teacher Association (PTA), Pennsylvania Association of Rural & Small Schools, Arkansas Rural Education Association,  California Small School Districts’ Association, Center for Rural Affairs, Challenge West Virginia, Michigan Small & Rural Schools Association, Minnesota Rural Education Association, Missouri Association of Rural Education, Montana Small Schools Alliance, National Farmers Union, National Rural Education Advocacy Coalition, National Rural Education Association, North Carolina Rural Education Working Group, Organizations Concerned About Rural Education, Rural Community Alliance (AR), The Rural School and Community Trust, Save Alabama’s Small schools, South Carolina Rural Education Grassroots Group, Southern Echo, Tennessee School Systems for Equity, Texas Rural Education Association, Vermont Rural Partnership, YouthBuild, USA.

To view bill summary, click here.