School-level Resource Allocation: Communicating for Transparency and Equity
The Elementary and Secondary Education Act, as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act, requires new levels of financial transparency, including reporting per-pupil expenditures at the school level, disaggregated by source. This session focuses on approaches and tools States and districts can use to ensure meaningful reporting and to communicate local priorities based on the trends their data reveal. This session will feature staff from the U.S. Department of Education, State and local practitioners and subject matter experts from partner organizations.
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Aaron R. Butler, Ph.D is a principal technical assistance consultant at American Institutes for Research (AIR). He has more than 15 years of experience in public education spanning rural, suburban, and urban districts. Currently, Dr. Butler is the task lead for individual technical assistance for the State Support Network and provides leadership training and equitable access support to states and districts for the Center on Great Teachers and Leaders (GTL) and REL Midwest at AIR. Dr. Butler’s primary areas of focus at AIR include strategic planning, resource allocation, leadership development and coaching, and district and school improvement. In addition, he has extensive experience with training school leaders on the effective use of data, developing progress monitoring systems, and providing review and feedback to states in the design of school improvement supports for their ESSA consolidated plans. Dr. Butler has written multiple blog posts for the GTL Center on leadership issues, was a contributing author for Enduring Myths that Inhibit School Turnaround (2017), and has presented at multiple national and regional conferences. His dissertation focused on the relationship between resource allocation patterns and student performance in Missouri public schools. Prior to joining AIR, Dr. Butler served as a turnaround administrator, director of federal programs, and high school mathematics teacher. Dr. Butler earned his Ph.D in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies from the University of Missouri-St. Louis.
Katie Hagan is a Research Associate at Edunomics Lab at Georgetown University. Prior to joining the Edunomics team, Katie worked as a Policy Fellow at Business for Educational Success and Transformation in North Carolina, where she researched and advocated for high-quality state assessment and accountability systems. Katie has also been a classroom teacher in both traditional public and public charter schools, and was a 2011 Teach For America corps member in Las Vegas, NV. She holds a Master of Public Policy degree from Duke University, a M.Ed. from the University of Nevada, and a B.A. from Virginia Tech.
A former teacher and district staffer, Jessica McKinney focuses on fiscal equity, accountability, and student assessment policy in the Office of State Support at the U.S. Department of Education.
After receiving his Masters and PhD in Education from the University of North Carolina, Dr. McMillen has held research and evaluation positions at both the state and local school district level since 1999. He has served in leadership roles for professional organizations related to educational research and assessment at the state and national level, including the North Carolina Association for Research in Education and the Directors of Research and Evaluation. Dr. McMillen has given numerous presentations to professional and community groups and published studies on a number of education topics, including school size, year-round schools, the achievement gap, and equity issues in course placements and related student outcomes.
Sara serves as the Senior Manager, Fiscal and Academic Solvency at the Illinois State Board of Education. As the “non-finance person” in the agency’s finance division, she builds bridges between academics, programs, strategy, and finance such that state K-12 policy and practice can support schools more holistically. Sara previously acted as the Managing Director and Advisor of Education Policy for the Illinois Secretary of Education. Highlighted work included K-12 funding reform, high school course equity, and ESSA. Before coming to Illinois, Sara worked as a program manager with Mass Insight Education, a nationally recognized leader in school turnaround. She began her education career teaching Spanish in Milwaukee, WI. Sara holds an A.B. in Comparative Literature from Princeton University and an M.A. in Education from Marquette University. She resides in Chicago.