An EconTalk Podcast Listening Guide

Hanushek on Education and School Finance

Listen to the EconTalk podcast Hanushek on Education and School Finance and consider these questions.

1. Roberts and Hanushek begin by discussing common misunderstandings regarding the role of property taxes in school finance. What is the relationship between the two? What changes in school finance have occurred over the past 40 years?

2. What is the significance of the Serrano v Priest case in terms of school finance? Describe the transition of subsequent cases from equity cases to adequacy cases.

3. According to Hanushek, what problems arose from the court’s decision in “Campaign for Fiscal Equity” v State of New York?

4. Both Hanushek and Roberts challenge the constitutionality of many of these types of court cases. On what grounds? What does Roberts mean when he says an additional problem in these decisions (i.e., beyond constitutionality) is the lack of any sort of feedback loop?

5. How does Hanushek suggest that the “No Child Left Behind” legislation has aided the cause of adequacy funding lawsuits?

6. Roberts asks Hanushek why we “don’t get what we pay for” in terms of school finance. How does Hanushek respond?

7. What have been the recent competition effects of private, charter, and home schooling, according to Hanushek?

8. Roberts and Hanushe briefly discuss the role of parents in the education market. What trends does Hanushek see currently in parental involvement, and what does he predict about parental involvement in the near future?

9. In closing, Hanushek offers three suggestions for making the relationship between school funding and educational achievement more effective. Describe each.