Two Connecticut governors have tried — and failed — to shift some of the massive cost of teacher pensions onto municipalities, arguing it’s inherently unfair for the state to foot the entire bill.
Education equity advocates hope to resurrect that debate this year — with a big twist.
Rather than trying to bolster the state’s coffers, the Connecticut chapter of Education Reform Now (ERN) wants the state to bill the wealthiest school districts and use at least some of those resources to help the poorest communities.
Connecticut’s second-largest education-related expenditure — about 7% of the General Fund or $1.44 billion this fiscal year — is the required annual contribution to the teachers’ pension fund. That hefty pension contribution consumes resources that normally would be spent on school operations or other core programs in the state budget.
For most states, this pension expense is much less. According to ERN, Connecticut is one of only seven states that spare towns from contributing toward teacher pension costs.
Author(s): Keith Phaneuf
Publication Date: 16 Dec 2021
Publication Site: CT Mirror