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Public School Finance

Concerning the financing of public schools, and, in connection therewith, making an appropriation.
2024 Regular Session
Education & School Finance (Pre & K-12)
Bill Summary

The bill:

  • Increases the statewide base per pupil funding for the 2024-25 budget year by $419.97 to account for inflation;
  • Sets a new statewide base per funding amount of $8,496.38 for the 2024-25 budget year; and
  • Sets the total program funding for the 2024-25 budget year for all school districts and institute charter schools to not less than $9,735,767,429.

The bill repeals the total program reserve fund (fund) on July 1, 2025. The bill clarifies that for the 2025-26 budget year and each budget year thereafter, revenue collected from mills that had previously been deposited in the fund by a school district are available to the school district to fund the costs of providing public education. The money is budgeted and expended in the school district's discretion.

The bill adds rural funding to the district's total program formula to provide additional funding to small rural districts or large rural districts.

The bill requires the state treasurer to transfer $15,715,539 from the state education fund to the mill levy override match fund.

Current law requires a new at-risk measure in the public school funding formula to be implemented in the 2024-25 budget year. The bill extends the implementation of this requirement to the 2025-26 budget year.

For the 2024-25 budget year, a school district's at-risk funding is the greater of the school district's at-risk funding amount for the 2023-24 budget year or the 2024-25 budget year.

Current law requires a qualified third-party evaluator (evaluator) who facilitates a facility school work group (work group) to submit a report to the work group and the office of facility schools by September 1, 2025. The department of education (department) is required to submit the evaluator's report to the joint budget committee by October 1, 2025. The bill extends the report deadlines to September 1, 2026, and October 1, 2026, respectively.

The bill requires school districts, a district charter school, an institute charter school, or a board of cooperative services to offer the writing portion of a college entrance exam to students digitally. To be considered for a special education high-cost grant, current law requires the consideration of an administrative unit's annual audited operating expenses for the preceding budget year. The bill allows an administrative unit's annual audited operating expenses for one year prior to the preceding budget year to be considered if the annual audited operating expenses for the most recent preceding budget year are not available.

Current law requires a school district to receive the daily rate for education services provided by approved facility schools for a juvenile who is held in a jail or facility and receives at least 4 hours of educational services per week from the school district. The bill changes the daily rate to the rate for educational services provided by the Colorado school for the deaf and the blind or the education program operated by the Colorado mental health institute at Pueblo or Fort Logan.

The bill increases the cap on how much can be spent on administration for the ninth-grade success grant program from 5% to 8%.

The bill clarifies that a student with disabilities (student) who receives transition services and has postsecondary goals outlined in the student's individualized education program is eligible for concurrent enrollment courses.

The bill allows the educator licensure cash fund to be exempt from the limitations on the amount of uncommited reserves that may be maintained in a cash fund. For the 2024-25 state fiscal year, $32,878,255 is appropriated to the department from the state education fund to implement the school finance act. For the 2024-25 state fiscal year, $15,715,539 is appropriated to the department from the mill levy override match fund for mill levy override matching.

(Note: Italicized words indicate new material added to the original summary; dashes through words indicate deletions from the original summary.)

(Note: This summary applies to the reengrossed version of this bill as introduced in the second house.)


Became Law


Bill Text

The effective date for bills enacted without a safety clause is August 7, 2024, if the General Assembly adjourns sine die on May 8, 2024, unless otherwise specified. Details