Nevada Ed-Watch 9/27/19

The Ed-Watch series is designed to increase access to information on what decisions are being made regarding public education in Clark County and Nevada.

Nevada Department of Education Commission on School Funding  

What is the Commission on School Funding and what are they responsible for? The Commission on School Funding is an appointed board created in compliance with Senate Bill 543 (2019) that oversees the development of Nevada’s new K-12 public school funding formula. The Commission is responsible for providing guidance to school districts and the Department of Education on the implementation of the Pupil-Centered Funding Plan. The Commission must present their recommendations to the Governor and the Legislature by December 1, 2020. 

Click here to learn more and see current Commission Members. 

Can community members engage at Commission Meetings? Community members can sign up to speak at the Commission meetings. Members of the public can comment on agenda items during the first public comment period, and non-agenda items during the final public comment period. 

Friday, September 27, 2019
Commission on School Funding Meeting

Click here to see the meeting agenda

What happened at this meeting?

Public Comment

Members of the public provided testimony to the commission regarding:

  • The necessity of the commission to advance education funding in Nevada 
  • Appreciation for Commission members’ dedication to the Pupil-Centered Funding Formula
  • Ensuring that the commission’s processes remain transparent 

The Commission Committed to Four (4) Operating Rules of Engagement
Commission members committed to the following four Rules of Engagement for the operation of all Commission on School Funding meetings:

  1. Honor our time
  2. Respect the work
  3. Value each other
  4. Focus on improvement

Click here  to read more about the Rules of Engagement.

The Commission Heard an Overview of Open Meeting Law Responsibilities 

Highlighted Open Meeting Law responsibilities:

  • Any commission deliberation must occur transparently and in public. 
  • Technology can be used as a supplemental tool to convene a meeting, however there must still be a physical location for the public to participate in the meeting.
  • No more than five (5) members (quorum) may deliberate on a topic outside of an open meeting.

The Commision Elected Guy Hobbs as Vice-Chair 

Guy Hobbs was elected by commission members to serve as Vice-Chair of the Commission.  

The Commission Heard an Overview of the Pupil-Centered Funding Plan

Nevada Department of Education staff presented an overview of the Pupil-Centered Funding Plan, including the roles and responsibilities of the Commission, the department, and the Governor’s finance office (summarized below).

Responsibilities of the commission include:

  • Compare the original Nevada Plan to the Pupil-Centered Funding Plan
  • Project 2019-2021 funding distribution using the Pupil-Centered Funding Plan
  • Review 2019-2021 school district budgets that were prepared using the Pupil-Centered Funding Plan 
  • Make recommendations for needed changes to the Governor and Legislature 
  • Recommend revisions to the Nevada Department of Education, which could include:
    • Cost adjustment factors
    • Necessarily Small School Adjustment
    • Small District Equity Adjustment
    • “Average School” reports

Click here to see the presentation 

The immediate next steps for the commission include: 

  • Determine how to fulfill their mission within established timeframes
  • Identify information needed to facilitate the decision-making process
  • Propose recommendations to improve the implementation of the Pupil-Centered Funding Plan
  • Propose statutory changes to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of public education funding

The Commission Established Two (2) Work Groups 

Work groups were established to manage the workload and meet critical timelines of the commission. Work groups must be comprised of five (5) members each. Each group must include one (1) Chief Financial Officer of a district with 40,000 or fewer pupils, and one (1) Chief Financial Officer of a district with 40,000 or MORE pupils. 

Two (2) work groups have been identified based on the key responsibilities and deliverables outlined in Senate Bill  543.

Work Group 1: Formula and Distribution

This work group reviews base funding, the weights for categories of pupils, cost adjustment factors, and the distribution processes.


  • Dr. David Jensen (Work Group Lead)
  • Mark Mathers
  • Guy Hobbs
  • Paul Johnson 
  • Punam Mather

Work Group 2: Reporting and Monitoring 

This work group identifies the evidence required to monitor the implementation of the Pupil-Centered Funding Plan (PCFP) and determines recommendations to address any deficiencies.

  • Jim McIntosh (Work Group Lead)
  • Jason Goudy
  • A.J. Feuling 
  • Dr. Lisa Morris Hibbler 
  • Dusty Casey 

Click here to learn more about the structure of the work groups.

Requests for Future Agenda Items:

  • See a presentation on the basic definitions of SB 543 terms 
  • Hear insights from the Applied Analysis data team regarding the original inception of the Pupil-Centered Funding Plan

Click here to read about this meeting in the Nevada Independent.

Click here to read about this meeting in the Las Vegas Review-Journal

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