New Co-Sponsor of All Children Are Equal Act

Last Updated: September 28, 2011

This article appeared in the September 2011 Rural Policy Matters.

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Representative Bill Owen (D-NY) is the newest among a growing list of Congressional co-sponsors of the All Children are Equal Act (ACE), H.R. 2485. Owen, whose 23rd district includes much of northeastern New York, became the sixth Democrat and15th member of the U.S. House to sign on to the bill.

H.R. 2485 (ACE) would end discrimination in the Title I formulas that distribute federal funding to school districts to enhance the education of very low-income students. Title I is the major financial component of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (currently known as No Child Left Behind).

The intent of Congress has been to provide more funding for students who attend school in districts with high concentrations of poverty. But since 2002 when “number weighting” was implemented, the formulas have sent more money per eligible child to larger districts than to smaller districts, regardless of poverty rate. As a result, most smaller urban and rural districts receive less federal funding for each of their very low income students than larger districts do, including low poverty large districts.

You can learn more about number weighting and the efforts to fix the Title I formulas at the website of the Formula Fairness campaign:

HR 2485, which was introduced in July by Rep. Glenn "GT" Thompason (D-PA) and 10 additional co-sponsors, would phase out number weighting to end these inequities. 

You can ask your member of Congress to join the effort to end discrimination in the Title I formulas by co-sponsoring H.R. 2485. Just click here and follow the links.

And, you can help build support for HR 2485 by encouraging your organizations to write a letter of endorsement. Send your letter to Rep. Thompson’s Legislative Director at and please send a copy to

Be sure to check out Marty Strange’s Commentary, “Rural Student Success Critical to National Goals” in the August 26th Education Week (p. 24 in the paper edition). Strange, who is Policy Director of the Rural Trust, discusses Title I inequities and other policies that have a detrimental effect on rural schools and students.

Read more:

The text of HR2485/ACE:

The Formula Fairness Campaign:

Marty Strange commentary in Education Week:

Read more from the September 2011 Rural Policy Matters.