Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF)

Get the California School-Based Health Alliance’s new LCFF resources for school health advocates:

About California’s New Education Funding Law

The Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) is California’s new formula for determining the level of state funding to school districts to provide for their state-supported general and supplemental programs.

The LCFF changes two major aspects of education financing:

  • MORE FOR TARGETED STUDENTS – Increases funding for targeted student populations (defined as low-income, English language learners, and foster youth)
  • LOCAL FLEXIBILITY – Replaces many of the categorical funding requirements and leaves most spending decisions to local discretion

Implementation of LCFF will take time — approximately eight years — but implementation begins with the 2013-2014 school year. School districts can anticipate increased funds and decision making powers in 2014, and must adopt their spending plans by July 1, 2014.

About LCFF Funding & Local Plans

LCFF will provide additional resources to districts serving the state’s most vulnerable students. The LCFF establishes uniform per-student base grants, with different rates for different grade spans. The formula acknowledges that some targeted students (English language learners, low income, and foster youth) have greater needs that require more resources. For each targeted student, districts will receive an additional 20% of the base grant per student. This is called their supplemental grant. Districts with more than 55% targeted students will receive an additional concentration grant. For example, if a district has 72% targeted students, they would receive concentration funding for 17% of their students (difference between 55 and 72 percent).

The LCFF also requires school districts to develop Local Control and Accountability Plans (LCAPs). The LCAP must establish annual goals for all students, describe what actions will be taken to achieve those goals, and illustrate how funds will be spent to increase or improve services for students, and especially targeted students. School districts must submit 3-year plans and additional annual updates.

School district LCAPs and spending plans must address at least eight state priority areas – including two areas which most relate to student health needs and services, student engagement and school climate.

Why It Matters

  • School districts receive additional resources to meet the unique challenges that face certain targeted student groups. These resources must be spent to increase or improve services for targeted students to achieve state and local priorities.
  • School districts are receiving more money and a lot more freedom to determine how to spend it. Spending decisions will be largely left to the discretion of local districts. Parents, students, school staff and community members must stay engaged and ensure these resources are allocated where there is the most need.

Additional Resources for Understanding LCFF

For more information on LCFF, visit WestEd’s LCFF website.

Children Now and EdSource also are great resources for more information. Visit their websites to find webinars, toolkits, FAQs, and news updates.

Visit the California Department of Education to learn more about the latest proposed regulations.