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The Minimum Foundation Program (MFP) Task Force needs to hear your voice!
December 8, 2014


Have you ever been told that your child's services were being reduced or not available to the degree needed?


Do you wonder if the reason some services are not provided is because money is not following the right students?


Join LaTEACH members at the final Minimum Foundation Program (MFP) Task Force meeting on Tuesday, December 16th to advocate for appropriate funding levels to schools based on the students served.
WHAT:     Minimum Foundation Program (MFP) Task Force Agenda

ISSUES:   Recommend how $3.5 billion will be distributed to schools. 

WHEN:     December 16, 2014   9:00 - 4:00 p.m.

WHERE:  Thomas Jefferson Room (1-136), Claiborne Building
                 1201 N. Third Street, Baton Rouge, LA 70802

Need a purple LaTEACH shirt?  Contact your 

LaTEACH Regional Leader or email

Important Information

Why does the money not necessarily follow the right students?

The Minimum Foundation Program, or MFP, is the formula for how elementary and high schools get their piece of $3,500,000,000 - that is 3.5 Billion dollars.  While the formula is complex, the concept of how the formula creates inequities across schools is simple.  Relative to the amount provided for students without disabilities, each student identified with a disability in a traditional public school system brings in 2.5 times as many dollars as a child without a disability.   The amount of money taken from traditional public schools and provided to charter schools run by BESE and other school choice programs is determined by a different formula - an average amount of money which is the same amount for every student -regardless if the student has a disability or not.

When there is an imbalance of students with varying levels of need across traditional and certain charter schools or choice programs, whichever school has more than their share of students with high-cost needs is not receiving the funding necessary to cover the costs of the services for the students in their school.

Additional dollars are needed to provide services such as therapies (speech, occupational, Adaptive physical education, behavioral), services (e.g., nursing), devices (e.g., augmentative communication systems, medical equipment, adaptive equipment, etc.) and higher teacher ratios.  Of course, no two students with disabilities have the same amount of services, but on average, it costs much more to serve students with disabilities.  In today's world of competitive education, it seems necessary to ensure adequate resources are provided to schools based on student need and there should not be financial incentives for schools to avoid serving students with more needs.


Which school systems are not getting adequate funds to serve the students in their schools?

Typically, the imbalance works against the traditional public school system because it does not receive its fair share of funding; however, the funding inequity can work both ways.  A charter school wishing to serve a student with a disability may not be receiving an adequate amount of funds needed to provide services to that student.  Parents should not have to wonder whether the school received the right amount of funds to serve their student.


To understand the funding imbalance between traditional and charter schools (Type II and V) watch the webinar: Why is my student's money following your student?


High Cost Fund Pool  


Do High-Cost Funds cover all of the costs schools need to serve students with the highest cost needs?

Not really.  Schools can apply to receive a portion of the High-Cost Funds for students who cost more than three times the average of MFP funds per student, or more than about $33,000.  Unfortunately, the amount of funds in this pool is inadequate to cover the total cost of serving students with high-cost needs.

Click here for the MFP High Cost Fund Distributions by school system.

The percentage of requested high cost funds received for 2014-15 was 38.1 percent for traditional school systems and 40.75 percent for most charter schools.  Two charter schools received 50 percent of their requested amount and one charter school received 75 percent.


Relative to the rest of the state, charter schools in Orleans identified a lot more students with high cost needs; these schools identified 128 students or 27 percent of the statewide count of students with high-cost needs from an Orleans population that is about 8 percent of the state.  Certainly it would be expected that some other large school systems would have more students with high-cost needs than are contained in these applications.  It is each school system's responsibility to submit an application. Traditional school systems increased their overall rate of applications since last year by a significant margin; however, if the rate of students with high-cost needs in charter schools located in Orleans is accurate, this fund will need to be increased substantially to adequately cover the cost of serving all students across the state who have high-cost needs.  Last year the La. D.D. Council estimated approximately $55 million would be needed to cover the costs for all students with high cost needs.



See the Council letter to Senate Education with an analysis of the distribution of high-cost funds in 2013-2014 and estimate for 2014-2015.

What have LaTEACH members been advocating for?

LaTEACH members have participated in previous MFP Task Force meetings and shared recommendations for the funding formula to be consistent across all school systems and to consider the cost of services for students with significant needs.  See the LaDDCNews from March 1, 2013 Proposed Changes will not fix Funding Inequities. 

In addition, two years ago BESE was requested by the Legislature (Senate Concurrent Resolution 124 of 2012) to study and determine the most equitable funding methodology to address the individual needs of children with disabilities within the MFP formula and incorporate such methodology into the formula as soon as possible.


These funding issues are real.  Did you miss the webinar detailing the impact of Louisiana's accountability and funding systems on a school system's financial health and the impact of and to students with signficant disabilities?  News of Union Parish receiving a Fiscal Risk Assessment raised a flag, but this issue is not isolated to Union Parish, it is a result of our accountability and funding inequities related to students with disabilities.


Webinar of La Accountabiltiy and Funding Impact on Students with Disabilities  


Are you ready for a change to this inequitable way to distribute funds?

What To Do

What can you do about it?

If you want to make sure the right amount of money follows (or stays with) your child, let members of the MFP Task Force know how you feel!

Participate in the meetings and share your thoughts and concerns regarding how these issues impact your child.  Contact MFP Task Force members before December 16th.

Ashley McReynolds is representing parents of students with disabilities on the MFP Task Force and welcomes your thoughts, concerns and suggestions on how schools should be funded for serving students with disabilities.  

Email Ashley at: 

Did You Take Action?
action alert
Please let us know if you plan to attend any of the meetings above or if you sent any comments to any member of the MFP Task Force, BESE or Legislators to consider by emailing us at
Any questions?
If there are any questions about the information in this alert, contact LaTEACH at:
contact pic 
Phone: 1-800-450-8108
Phone: 1-800-894-6558

LaTEACH is an initiative of the Louisiana Developmental Disabilities Council.