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Ed Week Marketbrief, 4/21/17

K-12 schools could save billions by sharing ed-tech prices, report says

U.S. schools could save at least $3 billion a year on educational technology by sharing information about how much they pay for hardware and software, according to estimates in a new study by the nonprofit Technology for Education Consortium. Discrepancies between the highest and lowest prices districts pay for the same hardware and software product can range between 20 percent and 40 percent, the researchers found.

Arizona Central, 4/20/17

Arizona is expanding its school-voucher program. What does it mean for parents?

The Arizona Legislature has passed one of the most expansive school-voucher programs in the nation. The program gives public funds to students to use on private-school tuition, therapies and other educational services. Republican lawmakers narrowly approved the plan, which allows an estimated 30,000 students to take part in the program by 2022.

New Jersey Herald, 4/23/17

New Jersey school spending tough to compare

The Taxpayers Guide to Education Spending 2017 shows the myriad ways which school district numbers can be divided, with several categories of per pupil costs, including one labeled “actual per pupil costs.” But trying to compare district to district can be a daunting affair, even if the state does try to eliminate some variables, such as transportation costs, the amount of pension costs for local teachers paid by the district or even judgments against the school district. Click here for an interactive map of district per-pupil spending from NJ Spotlight.

Education Next, 4/11/17

Op-Ed: With new data, school finance is coming out of the dark ages

A sleeper provision in the Every Student Succeeds Act—come December 2018—will serve up a motherlode of never-before-available school-level financial data. If we seize the unprecedented opportunity this data offers, we will be better equipped to tackle some of education’s most pressing issues—like the need for greater equity and productivity—and help schools across the country do better for their students.

WHIO-TV, 4/15/17

Panel: Indianapolis should close 3 of 7 public high schools

Most of the district lies in Center Township, where the population has fallen by 194,424 since 1950 while the population of the surrounding townships more than tripled. The report also cites enrollment growth at charter schools and at private schools, which have benefited from Indiana’s voucher program. One of the nation’s largest, the program enables parents to use public funds to send their children to non-public schools.