The SEEK base guarantee per pupil will go down:
- $3,903 was the original SEEK base guarantee per pupil for 2011-12
- $3,850 is the average guarantee that has actually been possible for 2011-12: schools turned out have more students than the budget expected and funding for each child had to be reduced as a result.
- $3,833 is the proposed base guarantee for 2012-13.
- $3,827 is the proposed base guarantee for 2013-14.
The total funding for the SEEK base will be flat:
- $2.9 billion was the budget line item for 2011-12.
- $2.9 billion is the proposed budget line item for 2012-13.
- $2.9 billion is the proposed budget line item for 2013-14.
Why will the per pupil will go down while the total funding remains flat? Primarily, because the number of students in average daily attendance is expected to rise:
- 596,858 was the final figure used for 2011-12 SEEK allocations.
- 600,662 is the budget assumption for 2012-13.
- 603,523 is the budget assumption for 2013-14.
It is also important to note that though the local contribution of SEEK is expected to rise again, that growth is much smaller than in most past years:
- $856 million of the guarantee was contributed by the local 30¢ tax rate for 2011-12.
- $866 million of the guarantee is expected to be the local 30¢ contribution for 2012-13.
- $881 million of the guarantee is expected to be the local 30¢ contribution for 2013-14.
(The SEEK guarantee is really funded by a combination of state and local dollars. In years past, growing local property values contributed a lot to Kentucky's ability to afford a growing SEEK guarantee. Local growth is still expected to contribute, but now it works to limit how much the guarantee will go down.)
To put these SEEK numbers in further context, do note that federal funding is dropping rapidly, from $1,215 million last year to $878 million this year, and to an estimated $782 million in 2012-13. State funding to specific categorical programs beyond SEEK will also drop, and we can also expect inflation to further reduce the buying power of school dollars from all sources.