Financing Education in a Climate of Change

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  • Edition: 12th
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2015-01-08
  • Publisher: Pearson
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Supplemental Materials

What is included with this book?


This new edition of the classic text in the field of school finance retains the practical tone and superior presentation that made the previous editions best sellers, while presenting the most up-to-date information and material available on key subjects. Here readers get a firm, balanced look of all facets of financing education, clarified and reinforced through numerous clear tables, figures, and key concept lists, and a tone and presentation that illustrates even the most difficult concepts. The new Twelfth Edition of Financing Education in a Climate of Change includes information on hot button topics such as the economics of education, recent court decisions 50-state comparison tables, the Common Core State Standards, and the ongoing debate about school vouchers, tax credits, and charter schools.

Author Biography

Dr. Vern Brimley has been a public school administrator for over 30 years, retiring as administrative assistant to the superintendent of Provo City Schools.  He has been director of federal programs, purchasing, research, public relations an elementary teacher and principal.  He served on the State of Utah committee delegated by the Utah State Legislature to study the Utah School Finance system giving several presentations to the committee.  Twelve major changes resulted from this study, including equalization of capital outlay budgets.  Dr. Brimley taught in a secondary modern school in Great Britain for a year on a Fulbright Exchange scholarship. He was selected as one of 40 educational administrators from throughout the U.S. and Canada to participate in the initial intensive two-month study program under the sponsorship of the National Academy for School Executives (NASE) – the training arm of the American Association of School Administrators (NASA) - and the Danforth Foundation. The Study-Leave Fellowship provided the opportunity for Dr. Brimley to study the financial structure of state educational systems and state departments of education.  The Kettering Foundation designated him as an Innovative Educator. He has been a consultant for the Utah State Legislature Education Committee and was liaison with that body while with Provo schools.  He has been a consultant for several school districts


Dr. Brimley was a student of Professor Percy Burrup and did research for the first edition of Financing Education in a Climate of Change and was co-author of the third edition with Professor Burrup.  He teamed with Dr. Rulon Garfield after Dr. Burrup’s death to write the fourth through eleventh edition and with Dr. Deborah Verstegen as co-author for the eleventh and twelfth edition. Dr. Brimley served as an Adjunct Professor at Brigham Young University and has taught many education leadership courses, but specialized in school finance and school business management.  He has presented papers at conferences including the American Education Finance Association and has written articles on various education issues.  He is married to Dawn Baker Brimley.  They are the parents of three daughters and have ten grandchildren.


Deborah Verstegen is a Professor of Educational Leadership, College of Education, University of Nevada, Reno. She served as Edwin J. O’Leary Chair of Financial Management, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign in 2006-07 and was a professor in finance, policy and leadership in the Curry School of Education at the University of Virginia for nearly two decades.  Prior to joining the university community in 1984, she was a teacher, administrator and legislative aide in state government.  She has had teaching experience at all levels, from pre-school, elementary, secondary, and community college, to university, at the graduate level.  Her administrative experience in education is also broad.  She has been a central office administrator for a K-12 school system in Alaska's Iditarod Area School District--which is approximately the size of Ohio and includes 14 schools and two preschools--Director of the Mid-management Program at the University of Texas at Austin, and Department Chair at UNR.  She has worked in government as a legislative aide in Wisconsin's House of Representatives and as a lobbyist for the nonpartisan League of Women Voters of Virginia in the Virginia General Assembly.  She was named Distinguished National Fellow in Finance in 2011 and developed an equity statistic, later named the “Verstegen Index” by scholars. Dr. Verstegen is actively involved in several professional associations and currently she serves as an Education Policy Editor for the JEF and serves on the Board of Advisors for the National Education Finance Conference.


Currently, she is a tenured professor at the University of Nevada teaching graduate and undergraduate classes.



Rulon Garfield, Ph.D., has a distinguished history in educational finance. As full Professor of Educational Leadership he sat in the finance-economic-policy chair at Brigham Young University formerly occupied by the late Percy E. Burrup. Just prior to accepting this position he was Director, Management Consultant Services, Coopers and Lybrand, assisting in finance and business administration issues for local districts, state departments of education, colleges and universities.


He has been a Presidential Appointee of Gerald R. Ford as Chairman of the Federal Regional (VIII) Council; Regional Director (VIII) Department of Health, Education and Welfare; Lead Regional Director of Finance and Management, Lead Regional Director for Education, HEW; State Senator, serving on the Education and Appropriations Committees. His service included that of being a teacher in elementary school, junior high, high school, community college, college, university—undergraduate and graduate. As an educational leader at the elementary, secondary, district, state, and national levels he has had to solve many practical problems in educational finance.


When chosen as an American Political Science Congressional Fellow, he served as a Legislative Staff Assistant in the United States House of Representatives and in the United States Senate as a Special Staff Assistant to the vice President of the United States. He is the author of numerous articles and three books, a speaker at national meetings and state conventions on educational finance. Dr. Garfield co-authored the fourth through the 10th editions of Financing Education in a Climate of Change with Dr. Vern Brimley and with the addition of Dr. Deborah Verstegen for the eleventh and twelfth edition.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 The Economics of Education

    Education as Human Capital

    Creation of Wealth and Education

    Education: An Important Industry

    A Public-Sector Responsibility

    Economics and Social Progress

    Economic Benefits of Education

    Noneconomic Benefits of Education

    Taxation and Education

    Cost-Quality Relationship in Education

Chapter 2 The Need for Adequate Funds

    Societal Impact on Educational Needs

    Education Deserves High Priority

    The Public Wants Good Schools

    The Increasing Costs of Education

    Demographic and Social Influences

    The Consequences of Not Education People Adequately

    Society Suffers the Effects of Poor Education

    What is the Cost of an Adequate Education?

Chapter 3 Financing Education Equitably

    Inequalities in Financing Education

    Equity: An Objective of School Finance Reform

    Equity at the School Level

    Measures of School District Wealth

    Historical Influences on Equity    

    The Equalization Principal

    Improving State Equalization Practices

    Foundation Program Variations

    The Impact of Average Daily Attendance on Equity

    The Changing Climate and Current School Finance Practices

Chapter 4 Patterns for School Finance Systems

    Developing Patterns

    Determining the Best Finance Plan

    Full State Funding

    District Power Equalization

    Property Reassessment and Local District Revenues

    Emphasis on Weighting Factors

    Principal Types of Weightings

Chapter 5 Sources of Revenue

    The Taxation System

    Education- Financed by Government

    Characteristics of a Good Tax System

    Taxes for Education

    Income Tax

    Sales Tax

    Property Tax

    Excise Tax

    Severance Tax

    Other Funding Sources

    Potential New Taxes

Chapter 6 Eroding Local Control

    Changing Rural-Urban Influence on Education

    Basic School District Administrative Units

    The Administration of Local School Districts

    Advantages of Local Control

    Fiscal Independence of School Districts

    Trends in Local Taxation Practices

    Measure of Local Taxpaying Ability

    Local, State, and Federal Tax Responsibility

Chapter 7 Education: A State Function

    Early Development of State Responsibility

    Development of Decentralized Educational Systems

    Development of School Finance Policies

    Developmental Stages of School Finance

    The Varying State Programs

    State Ability to Support Education

Chapter 8 Federal Interest in Education


    Historical Role of the Federal Government

    U.S. Department of Education

    Constitutional Role

    Block Grants, Categorical Aid, and General Aid

    Federal Expenditures

    Fiscal Advantages and Disadvantages

    Increased Government Service

    The Future of Federal Aid to Education

Chapter 9 The Influence and Climate of the Courts

    Three Waves of School Finance Litigation

    The First Wave of School Finance Litigation

    The Second Wave of School Finance Litigation

    The Third Wave of School Finance Litigation: A Shift from Equity to Adequacy

    Second-Generation Adequacy Cases

    Impact of School Finance Litigation over Time

    Pressure for Reform

    Finance Reform or Tax Reduction?

    Court Decision Guidelines

Chapter 10 Public Funds and Nonpublic Schools

    The Law and Church-State Relations

    Educational Choice

    Controversy Not Solved

Chapter 11 Financing School Facilities

    Early Capital-Outlay Programs

    The Need

    Current Capital-Outlay Rulings

    State Support

    Equity in Financing Educational Facilities

    The Federal Government and Capital Outlays

    Capital-Outlay Finance Plans

    School Bonding Practices

    Other Alternatives

    Impact Fees

Chapter 12 Administering the District and School Budget

    Evolution of Budgetary Practices

    Development of a Systems Approach to Budgeting

    District and School Budgetary Approaches

    District-Level Budgetary Practices

    Administering the District Budget

    School/District Coordination

    Budgeting at the School Level

    Challenge of Leadership

Chapter 13 Accounting and Auditing

    The School Accounting System

    The Changing Accounting Environment

    Comprehensive Annual Financial Report

    Characteristics of Governmental (Fund) Accounting

    Encumbrance Accounting

    Cost Accounting

    Accrual Accounting

    Receiving and Depositing Funds

    Expending School Funds


    Protecting School Funds

Chapter 14 Business Aspects of the School Community

    Increased Safety Hazards

    The Business Office

    Supplies and Equipment


    Supply Management

    Risk Management


    School Food Services

Chapter 15 Human Resources and School Finance

    The Expanded Role of Human Resources Administration

    Teacher Compensation


    Pay-for-Performance-- Merit Pay

    Additional Issues

    Teachers and School Finance

    The Changing Assignments of Teachers

    Administrative and Supervisory Salaries

    Noncertified Personnel Salaries

    Payroll Policies and Procedures

    Government Influence

Chapter 16 The Road Ahead in School Finance

    The Past as Prologue

    The Continuing Climate of Change

    Investments in Education

    Improvements in Education

    The Future of Public School Finance

    Unresolved Issues

    Some Characteristics of Educational Structure

    School Finance Goals

    The Challenge

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