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Equality of Opportunity and School Finance: A Commentary on Ladd, Satz, and Brighouse and Swift


  • Kenneth A. Strike

    () (P.O. Box 174, Thendara, NY)


This article discusses issues of justice concerning school finance with a focus on the development of a conception of equality of educational opportunity. Emphasis is put on discussing the views of the other contributors in this symposium. The main conclusions of the discussion are that (1) equity and adequacy are not inconsistent views because they address fundamentally different questions; (2) adequacy sets a floor under the education that the state owes to all children, but it does not relieve the state of the obligation to provide whatever additional education it chooses to provide equally; (3) equality of opportunity may be limited by conflicting rights; and (4) weighted student funding (WSF) is theoretically attractive because it emphasizes the funding of students rather than districts and is sensitive to relevant differences among them, however the level of theoretical agreement and empirical knowledge required to implement WSF in a nuanced way is not available. © 2008 American Education Finance Association

Suggested Citation

  • Kenneth A. Strike, 2008. "Equality of Opportunity and School Finance: A Commentary on Ladd, Satz, and Brighouse and Swift," Education Finance and Policy, MIT Press, vol. 3(4), pages 467-494, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:edfpol:v:3:y:2008:i:4:p:467-494

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    More about this item


    educational equality; school finance; equity; educational adequacy; civic equality; weighted student funding;

    JEL classification:

    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I22 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Educational Finance; Financial Aid


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