Georgia Code Title 20. Education § 20-2-161

(a) The high school general education program is declared to be the base program against which the cost of all other instructional programs shall be compared. The amount of funds needed by each full-time equivalent student in the base program, in order that such program can be sufficiently funded to provide quality basic education to all enrolled students, shall be known as the “base amount” and shall reflect program components which constitute the program weight for the high school general education program in Code Sections 20-2-182 through 20-2-186 . However, the General Assembly shall annually establish through the General Appropriations Act the base amount to be used each year. In the event that the base amount so established when multiplied by the program weights in subsection (b) of this Code section requires funds in excess of the appropriation for the Quality Basic Education Formula grants, the funds which are appropriated for the Quality Basic Education Formula shall be prorated to each of the Quality Basic Education Formula cost categories.

(b) As the cost of instructional programs varies depending upon the teacher-student ratios and specific services typically required to address the special needs of students enrolled, state authorized instructional programs shall have the following program weights and teacher-student ratios:

(1) Kindergarten program․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

1.6724
weight and
1 to 15
ratio

(2) Kindergarten early intervention program․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

2.0678
weight and
1 to 11
ratio

(3) Primary grades program (1-3)․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

1.2948
weight and
1 to 17
ratio

(4) Primary grades early intervention program (1-3)․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

1.8180
weight and
1 to 11
ratio

(5) Upper elementary grades program (4-5)․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

1.0390
weight and
1 to 23
ratio

(6) Upper elementary grades early intervention program (4-5)․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

1.8125
weight and
1 to 11
ratio

(7) Middle school program (6-8)․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

1.1380
weight and
1 to 20
ratio

(8) High school general education program (9-12)․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

1.0000
weight and
1 to 23
ratio

(9) Career, technical, and agricultural education
laboratory program (9-12)․․․․․․

1.1830
weight and
1 to 20
ratio

(10) Program for persons with disabilities:

Category I․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

2.4118
weight and
1 to 8
ratio

(11) Program for persons with disabilities:

Category II․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

2.8402
weight and
1 to 6.5
ratio

(12) Program for persons with disabilities:

Category III․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

3.6188
weight and
1 to 5
ratio

(13) Program for persons with disabilities:

Category IV․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

5.8710
weight and
1 to 3
ratio

(14) Program for persons with disabilities:

Category V․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

2.4737
weight and
1 to 8
ratio

(15) Program for intellectually gifted students:

Category VI․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

1.6794
weight and
1 to 12
ratio

(16) Remedial education program․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

1.3576
weight and
1 to 15
ratio

(17) Alternative education program․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

1.4881
weight and
1 to 15
ratio

(18) English for speakers of other languages (ESOL) program․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․․

2.5892
weight and
1 to 7
ratio”

(c) For purposes of calculating the annual allotment of funds to each local school system, the program weights may be carried to as many additional decimal places as needed and may be varied from the weights stated in subsection (b) of this Code section, consistent with cost-of-living adjustments granted by the General Assembly for salaried and nonsalaried components, by not more than 1 1/2 percent.

(d) The total funds needed for the Quality Basic Education Program for each local school system shall be calculated annually. Such total shall represent the product of the following calculations for each of the programs identified in subsection (b) of this Code section:

(1) Multiply the average full-time equivalent program count pursuant to subsection (b) of Code Section 20-2-160 by the respective program weight established in subsection (b) of this Code section;

(2) Multiply the product computed in paragraph (1) of this subsection by the base amount as established in the General Appropriations Act; and

(3) Add the product computed in paragraph (2) of this subsection to the program adjustment amount for training and experience for the instructional program in accordance with subsection (e) of this Code section.

The process and associated components contained within this Code section shall be known as the “Quality Basic Education Formula.”

(e) The State Board of Education shall annually calculate for each instructional program provided for in subsection (b) of this Code section for each local school system the amount of additional funds needed beyond the amounts reflected in the base amount and the program weights, in order to pay the state minimum salaries pursuant to Code Section 20-2-212 . The calculation of such additional amount shall be based on all certificated professional personnel who were employed by the local school system as of the month of October for the most recent year that these data are available; provided, however, that the amount needed for training and experience for personnel funded through categorical grants shall only be included in the appropriate categorical grant. The amount shall be reported for each program identified in subsection (b) of this Code section for each full-time equivalent program count date and by segment of the school day and for each categorical program. Such additional amount shall be known as “program adjustment amount for training and experience” and this amount shall be noted in total in the language section of the General Appropriations Act each year.

(f) As the relative costs of the various program components will change over time and as some components will need to be added or removed, the Governor shall appoint a task force every three years for the purposes of reviewing the effectiveness of existing program weights and recommending to the General Assembly any changes needed. This task force shall be comprised of members or staff of the General Assembly, the State Board of Education, the Governor's office, and representatives of local school systems.


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