School Finance and Education Equity

School Finance and Education Equity Lessons from Kansas

Bruce D. Baker
paper, 272 Pages
Pub. Date: October 2021
ISBN-13: 978-1-68253-680-3
Price: $34.00

Add to Cart

Request an Examination Copy

This inspiring account of bipartisan political success delivers an expert breakdown of how and why Kansas—a politically conservative state—was able to craft a stable, balanced, and equitable system of funding for its public schools. Beyond a chronicle of one state’s achievements, School Finance and Education Equity provides invaluable policy guidance and lays out a blueprint that other states can use to strengthen their own public education systems.


Just as it takes a village to raise a child, Baker shows us that it takes a village—or better yet, a cast of characters and institutions from across a state—to build a decent public education system. Baker helps us see the intersecting factors that have allowed Kansas to survive—where others have fallen victim to—the assault on public education. The lesson is that facts, constitutions, institutions, and of course people all matter—and at different times in different amounts. — Derek W. Black, professor of law, Ernest F. Hollings Chair in Constitutional Law, University of South Carolina

How could Kansas, a deep red state, be the locus for some of the country’s most important school finance litigations, involving dramatic confrontations between the state supreme court and the legislature that have repeatedly upheld students’ rights to adequate funding? Bruce Baker unlocks this mystery in this engrossing book that describes the state’s unique constitutional structure, and the politics and the personalities—often women in key positions—that brought this to fruition. — Michael A. Rebell, professor and executive director, Center on Educational Equity, Teachers College, Columbia University

More Less

About the Author

Bruce D. Baker is a professor in the Department of Educational Theory, Policy and Administration at Rutgers Graduate School of Education in New Brunswick, NJ.

He previously served on the faculty at the University of Kansas from 1997 through 2008. In addition to publishing numerous articles, chapters, and a textbook on school finance, he has testified on school funding inequities and inadequacies in state and federal courts in Kansas, Arizona, Missouri, Texas, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Connecticut, and New York. He has also worked with state legislatures and boards of education in Kansas, Texas, Missouri, and Maryland, and most recently in Vermont and New Hampshire to inform and reform various aspects of state school finance systems. He blogs at and can be found on twitter @schlfinance101.

Table of Contents


Other books in School Finance

Other books in School Finance

Other books in School Finance

A Better Way to Budget

Nathan Levenson