Does Title I Funding Help to Equalize School Finance in Low-Income Communities?:Evidence from Michigan School Districts
*Names in bold indicate Presenter
While studying the patterns of total Title I allocation from the federal government to state governments, I examine the relationship between funding allocation and the regional poverty level in the lower level of inter-governmental allocation, between state government and LEAs. Previous studies addressed urban and large enrollment size school districts have an advantage in securing Title I funding (Liu, 2008). Another study shows district budgeting in practice is beneficial for the schools with the fewer educational challenges (Roza et.al, 2005). This study empirically examines this issue in Michigan to determine if Title I funding is allocated on the targeted groups and it helped to decrease inequality of funding. By comparing Title I funding allocation between high-poverty school districts and low-poverty school districts, I conduct analysis if Title I funds improve horizontal equity in Michigan. With Financial Information Database (FID) by school districts under the Michigan Department of Education, and the U.S. Census Bureau's Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates data, this study shows how Title I funding is consistent with poverty level. The analysis includes the effects of two times adjustment in legislation.
Finally, given the growth of charter schools, I studied that charter schools and the school districts that have large number of charter schools in their geographic area are affected to secure the funding due to the size of enrollment. I compared the enrollment of disadvantaged students between traditional schools and charter schools, and find the effects of federal funding allocation by school choice. The findings explain one of the reason that the traditional school districts to lose their students have difficulty in their funding.