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State Auditors: Poor Marks for How Idaho Tracks K-12 Education Funding 

click to enlarge O'DEA, CC BY-SA 3.0
Auditors with the Office of Performance Evaluations told a special committee of the Idaho Legislature on Tuesday that the state does a lousy job accounting for the distribution of funding to K-12 public schools. According to the analysis, "there were multiple instances in which either documented directions on funding were contradictory or [in] actual practice, contradicted law."

In particular, auditors pointed to Idaho special education programs during Fiscal Year 2015, when $85 million of the $294 million budgeted for special ed was not properly captured in state reports. In another finding, auditors said that about 86 percent of the $294 million total "was not tied to actual costs of providing services or an assessment of need." There are approximately 29,700 Idaho school children deemed to be special education students.

Among the recommendations to the Joint Legislative Oversight Committee is a more complete reporting of education program expenditures to address what OPE called "the unintentional opaqueness that makes it difficult to find the total, statewide spending on a program."
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