ConnCAN’s Spend Smart: Fix Our Broken School Funding System was released concurrently with a bill introduced in the Connecticut legislature, based on the principles outlined in the report. However, the report is of negligible value to the policy debate over Connecticut school finance because it provides little or no support for any of the foundational claims that undergird its proffered solutions. Similarly, the report provides little or no validation that the recommended solutions would actually improve either the equity or adequacy of funding for Connecticut schools. In fact, unsubstantiated, and ultimately patently false claims in the report, if used to guide policy, would result in substantial funding disparities for needy students. Whether intended or not, the likely overall effect of these recommendations will be to remove some funding for schools serving English Learners and serving the state’s lowest-income families and shift that funding to charter schools, which generally serve few such children in Connecticut.
ConnCAN's response to this review can be found here: http://www.conncan.org/learn/blog/conncan%E2%80%99s-%E2%80%9Cspend-smar…
Baker's reply to the ConnCAN response can be found here: http://schoolfinance101.wordpress.com/2011/04/15/conncan-cluelessness/
Baker, B.D. (2011). Review of “Spend Smart: Fix Our Broken School Funding System.” Boulder, CO: National Education Policy Center. Retrieved [date] from http://nepc.colorado.edu/thinktank/review-spend-smart