Essay On K-12 Educational Institutions And Financial Crisis
The K-12 Educational system is a fundamental learning model in countries like the United States, Korea and Canada. The success of this system does not only rely on political and technological facets, but also a societal economic component (Huang, 2013). The economy of a society plays a major role in the success of education, including K-12 education institutions. This occurs in the sense that it determines affordability of education services within a population and affects fiscal budgets of K-12 education systems (Huang, 2013). This research will focus on a discussion of how conditions of economic crises affect procurement and buying processes in K-12 Educational systems and the appropriate strategies that could be employed to solve these challenges.
In a research published by Center for Public Education, it is indicated that economic conditions play a major role in the success of K-12 Educational Institutions. The research specifically highlights the effects of the economic depression that affect the United States’ educational systems, specifically K-12 educational institutions (Hull, 2010). In as much as the recession ended in 2009, the article notes that majority of K-12 education institutions were affected for a longer period of time even after the recession. One of the effects of economic crises on procurement and buying processes in K-12 educational systems is that major of these institutions are compelled to cut their budgets and reduce expenditure. This has a major negative impact of K-12 Educational systems in the sense that schools have to reduce/cut budgets allocated to procurement processes, thus leading to a reduction of necessary resources needed to support the educational systems. Additionally, reduced budgetary allocation to K-12 Educational Institution Education Systems basically means that other development projects are also affected for instance: Construction projects may have to be stopped due to inadequate resources.
The impact of economic crisis does not only affect procurement processes in K-12 educational systems, but also affect a school’s capacity to hire teachers. In order to counter the effects of this economic crisis on K-12 institutions, K-12 schools may implement strategies that basically involve reduction of expenditure on various projects. This may occur through cutting off budgets directed towards procurement projects in a manner that only fundamental of basic resources such as books are purchased. In a research published by the Center for Public Education in 2011, it is indicated that cutting off budgetary allocation in situations of national economic crisis was successfully implemented by certain district schools in the United States (Hull, 2010). This is a strategy that could work for k-12 Educational Systems.
Additionally, reduction of personal costs is another dimension of cutting off budgets that can be implemented to counter the effects of economic crisis on K-12 Educational Institutions. This can be specifically done by trimming personal spending among the staff with minimal layoffs among the teachers. Personal costs in this case entail retirement benefits and other benefits; the essence of reducing personal costs among teachers with minimal layoffs is meant to prevent any negative impact that may occur on students. Consequently, the concept of cutting off budgetary allocation towards procurement services in K-12 may be undertaken in the sense that: Budgets allocated towards procuring resources needed to facilitate certain courses that may not be needed for graduation are cut. On the other hand, cutting off budgets required to purchase certain extra-curricular resources are reduced.
The other strategy that may be implemented in K-12 Educational Institutions in case of a financial crisis is seeking of donor funds. It is important to acknowledge the fact that approximately half of financial resources used by K-12 Institutions are provided by central or federal governments. However, governments are usually affected by national financial crises and in most cases tend to reduce their budgetary allocation to support education systems. An example of such a scenario was experienced in the United States during the economic crisis of 2008/2009. The Federal Government through the Federal Stimulus Program reduced its budgetary allocation to support district schools, K-12 institutions inclusive. This impacted many schools and saw the massive laying off of teachers (Rothstein & Mcknight, 2012). In such scenarios, K-12 Educational Institutions may seek financial support from International Donor organizations for instance the International Monitory Fund, IMF among others. The concept of seeking funds from international donor organizations is that in most financial crises experienced locally may have minimal or to some extent no effects on these organizations.
In the discussion, it is evident that economic crises have significant impacts on K-12 Educational systems. One of these impacts involves cutting off budgets in a manner that schools have to reduce the amount of resources needed to facilitate their operations. Additionally, schools are usually compelled to reduce personal spending such as retirement benefits. However, the two major strategies that can be applied to counter these effects is reduction of spending in a manner that teachers and students are not affected as well as seeking donor support from International organizations.
Huang, F. (2013). The Impact Financial Crisis on Education Systems. Higher Education Policy, 275-283.
Hull, J. (2010). Cutting to the Bone: How Economic Crisis Affects Schools. Center for Publid Education System, 11(3).
Rothstein, R., & Mcknight, L. (2012). Cost Models of K-12 Schools on the National Information Infrastructure. Computers in the Schools, 31-57.