MADISON — Earlier this summer, the Department of Public Instruction distributed $7.5 million in aid to 123 school districts that had student transportation costs that far exceeded the statewide per pupil average.
Districts were eligible for High Cost Transportation Aid if their transportation costs exceed 150 percent of the statewide average cost per member, which was $614.42 per student. Additionally, student membership within the district must have been 50 students or fewer per square mile. Aid is based on audited information from the previous fiscal year (2015-16) and was paid in June.
“The High Cost Transportation Aid program can really make a difference in school districts that have higher than average transportation costs, freeing up resources to focus on students and their learning,” said State Superintendent Tony Evers. “Fully funding this aid program in the 2017-19 state budget will provide needed support for kids in our small, rural school districts.”
The High Cost Transportation Aid is categorical aid that provides additional funding to eligible school districts that have higher per pupil transportation costs when compared to the statewide average. The $7.5 million allocation in the 2015-17 state budget covers just over half of eligible costs. Payments to the 123 school districts that qualified for aid were prorated at 51.6 percent. Of the districts receiving aid, 22 received $100,000 or more in aid; 32 received between $50,000 and $100,000; 53 received between $10,000 and $50,000; and 16 received less than $10,000 to support pupil transportation costs.
NOTES: A list of school districts that received High Cost Transportation Aid is in the complete news release. More information about High Cost Transportation Aid can be found on the department’s School Financial Services Categorical Aid website.