Tuesday, September 21, 2021
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Kansas Policy Institute commissioned an assessment of the recent WestEd education cost review that was undertaken for the Kansas legislature at the behest of the Kansas Supreme Court. Dr. Benjamin Scafidi of Kennesaw State University has provided a response (below) critical of WestEd’s use of any “cost function” approach to determine education finance in Kansas. But much more precisely, Dr. Scafidi is not thus critical of the WestEd study itself as he is of using a price function approach to determine learning spending in the first place.

Click here to read Scafidi’s full paper.

Scafidi identifies three primary reasons why fee functions do not serve the purpose associated with providing reliable minimum value estimates for achieving scholar outcomes. The first has to do with external factors in which impact costs, the second is the absence of all or accurate measures associated with input prices, and lastly the inability to control for the presence of inefficiency by public faculties.

Dr. Scafidi summarizes the inherent limitations around employing a cost function method of determine suitable education expenses:

My point is that given the not enough available and accurate knowledge and given the tenuous relationship among spending and outcomes inside the conventional public school program over the past 5 to 8 many decades, education spending decisions should quit made on the basis of estimates through the cost function approach. (p. Several



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