In our new report, Recapture: The Most Misunderstood Aspect of the School Finance System, we highlight how recapture takes the blame for the Legislature not fully funding our schools.
No matter where we live, Texans want our children to have access to a good education. When school budgets get tight, property-wealthy districts are often quick to blame the primary equity tool of the school finance system: recapture. However, recapture, also known as “Robin Hood,” is not the villain in this story. In fact, recapture levels the playing field between property-wealthy and property-poor districts. Kids of all backgrounds, from Texarkana to Austin to Brownsville, deserve a high-quality education regardless of the property value within their community.
Instead of providing all schools with adequate levels of funding, the Legislature has used recapture to justify bringing the top down rather than the bottom up. By deeming some districts as “property-wealthy” while not providing enough funding to anyone, legislative leadership has sowed division among districts. To increase school funding so that all districts can support high-quality education for all students, Texans must reject these divisions and demand a finance system that meets the true costs to provide a solid public education for every child.