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Running Head: Lake Hamilton School District

Lake Hamilton School District Case Study


Markie Alexander / Hunt
Keller Graduate School of Management

Running Head: Lake Hamilton School District

Abstract
Lake Hamilton School District is very similar comparing to the state average in many areas
including; the number of schools, students, employees, the amount of students receiving free and
reduced lunch, the ethnic background of students, revenue, expenditure per student, and property
wealth per student. It does however have a larger difference in the amount of state and local
revenue compared to the states average and a larger school tax. This is due to a ruling that
changes the Amendment of 74 that regulates fair school funding, by allowing schools in wealthy
districts to retain overages in revenue rather than submit it to the state to fund other school
districts. Educational reform was just making headway when LHSD was found in 1945, which
made the first experience there slow moving and much different from the progressing district it is
today.

Running Head: Lake Hamilton School District

Lake Hamilton School District Case Study


Lake Hamilton School District Characteristics
Lake Hamilton School District is the largest district in Garland County. LHSD currently
has 4,442 students with over 500 employees. Their district is dispersed in six different schools
including; Primary which is kindergarten to first grade, Elementary - second to third, Middle six to seven, Junior High - eight to ninth, and High School - tenth through twelfth. 47% of the
students receive free lunch and 11% receive reduced lunch. The ethnic background of the
students is majority whites but it includes; 81.4% White, 9.0% Hispanic, 6.7% Multiracial, 2.0%
African American, 0.5% Asian, 0.2% Native American, and 0.1% Pacific Islander. LHSD has a
revenue of 38.1 million with a local revenue of $13,221,000, state revenue of $20,073,000, and
federal revenue of $4,827,000. Their expenditure per student is 8,630 and the average property
wealth per student is 9,429. They currently have accumulated 40.6 million in school tax. Their
student teacher ratio is 1 to 16.2 this ratio was taken in the 2013-2014 school year and over 60%
of their teachers have Master degrees. It is the most National Board Certified Teachers in
Garland County and ranked number 12 in Arkansas. All of Lake Hamiltons Schools are
accredited by the Arkansas State Department of Education.
Arkansas State Average Characteristics
Arkansass current number of K-12 Public Schools is 1062, 237 School Districts, 22
Open Enrollment Charter Schools, and 15 Education Service Co-operatives. Arkansas has
476,049 students enrolled in K-12 Public Schools, 30,338 High School Graduates, and 62.93%
of student who qualify for free and reduced lunches. Arkansas also has 32,181certified teachers,
8,548 certified staff, and 28,490 classified staff. There are 545 Elementary Schools, 221 Middle

Running Head: Lake Hamilton School District

and Junior High Schools, and 296 High Schools. The State average of the students ethnic
background is; 63.9% White, 0.3% not specified, 0.6% Native Hawaiian/ Pacific Islander, 0.7%
Native American/ Native Alaskan, 10.5% Hispanic, 20.7% African American, 1.5% Asian, and
1.8% two or more races. Arkansass revenue from all sources is $4,963,281,371 with the
Arkansas average local revenue being $6,374,645, state revenue is $9,841,660, and the federal
average revenue is $3,080,018 reported with the Arkansas Department of Education. The average
expenditure per student in Arkansas is 10,939. Arkansass average property wealth per student is
8,106.74 and the average school tax in Arkansas is 25 million.
Lake Hamilton School District History
Lake Hamilton School District was founded in 1945. During the Great Depression it hurt
the agricultural economy which caused a property tax-base. Most schools closed in Arkansas or
they commanded for tuition. The governor Junius Marion Futrell who was elected in 1932 was
trying to cut government expenses and believed that high schools were a waste of money.
Federal officials differed and thus the New Deal assistance helped to improve the condition.
Programs like the (WPA) Works Progress Administration and the (CCC) Civilian Conservation
Corps helped to give schools a gymnasium, auditorium, and cafeteria that was provided by the
federal government. With the expansion of the road system more buses were need and the
schools with one rooms slowly went away. But at this time governors and legislators wouldnt
risk making education reform an issue.
During World War II most male teachers left for the army and teachers took advantage of
a national teacher shortage to find better paying jobs causing a shortage for teachers. Even
though Arkansass public schools were weakened in 1948 legislatures voted for Act No. 1 in
which 424 districts were made, but most of the districts were non-compliant. In 1966 it was

Running Head: Lake Hamilton School District

reported that 31 districts still did not offer twelve years of school and in some cases schools that
did meet the requirements when the law was first established shortly later did not meet the laws
requirements. In most districts they had less than 100 students enrolled even though the law set
the standard number of students per district at 350.
In 1954 the case Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas, The U.S. Supreme
Court ruled that racial segregation of public schools was unconstitutional. In Arkansas however
white supremacy groups did not accept this ruling and tried to delay the integration process with
intimidation and boycotts. In Hoxie the school board sued the segregationists for their
obstruction. The Governor Fabus and segregationists tried to delay the integration at Central
High School in Little Rock. Fabus believed he was preserving order and called the National
Guard to prevent blacks from entering the School in 1957. The federal courts forced Faubus to
allow the integration process and President Dwight D. Eisenhower sent federal troops to make
sure that African Americans would attend the school safely. Faubuss efforts to prevent
integration caused support for the school board to repress and hurt the image of the states public
education system.
The educational system in Arkansas did not improve till Governor Dale Bumpers was
elected in 1971 to 1975 he passed several reforms including state-funded kindergarten, free high
school textbooks, and special education funding reform, but David Pryor opposed tax reform and
shifted the responsibility of funding education to the localities. In 1977 the General Assembly
passed legislation to establish a minimum foundation for funding for state aid for public schools.
Bill Clinton and Mike Huckabee were the most educational reform governors in the history of
Arkansas. Frank White supported a bill that put creationism with evolution but this caused a
negative reputation of Arkansas education. Hillary Clinton brought higher teacher quality, more

Running Head: Lake Hamilton School District

rigorous curriculum, longer school years, and a smaller class size. This helped Bill Clinton raise
states sales taxes by one percent to fund his reforms. The AEA opposed his teacher testing
initiative but benefited during this period and increased teachers salaries.
Lake Hamilton School Districts Current State
Currently Lake Hamilton School District received an increase to the district millage to
3.9 mill in 2013 to meet the facilities growing needs. It is now able to replace some older
facilities, expand existing facilities, and provide new and improved academic, music, art,
agricultural, athletic, and multipurpose facilities.
Changes to Amendment 74
The Arkansas Supreme Court ruled that school districts whose property tax revenues
exceeded state-mandated levels would allow the school districts to keep overages rather than
remit it to the state. This effects less than five percent of the school districts but education policy
experts, stakeholders, and political leaders believe that this decision undermines the states
commitment to fair funding for schools and may threaten many of the reforms that were
developed during the Lake View school finance lawsuit.
The Lake View case was brought forth by Eureka Springs and Fountain Lake school
district which are communities with a large number or retire residents and with large property
values. These communities challenge Amendment 74 that was passed in 1996 in response to the
Lake View school funding lawsuit that mandates school districts a 25 mill property tax which is
known as the Uniform Rate of Tax (URT.) The URT is in place to provide fair school funding for
all school districts and increase equity between districts. However state funding can help offset

Running Head: Lake Hamilton School District

differences between high wealth districts where 25 mills will have a significant revenue
compared to low wealth districts where it does not.
Districts like Fountain Lake and Eureka Springs generate more local revenue than what is
required for the formula from the URT. The remained revenue is summited to the state but the
state argues this prevents a statewide tax from excessively benefitting wealthy districts and
claimed that high wealth districts should be able to keep an overage.
Arkansians believe that with the courts ruling to allow school districts to keep excessive
funding will increase the inequity and will cause a substantial difference in property values
across these districts. They believe that Arkansas will lose many of the growths in the school
funding resulting from reforms that were determined by the Lake View lawsuit.
Majority ruled in a 4-3 decisions that the millage collection was not a state tax that should
be organized by the state but is a tax that the school district voters should accept, that the
legislature have the right to create regulations that order that excess revenues should be turned
over to the state for the use in financing all other districts if it desired to do so. Governor Beebe
and others believe that by revising this provision that it would set a corrupt example and permit
districts to tamper with the school finance reforms from the Lake View case and could upset the
adequacy and equity issues of Amendment 74.
Governor Mike Bebee and Arkansass Attorney General Dustin McDaniel both have
requested a rehearing, but were denied. I and several others believe that if officials file laws
intended to regress back to formerly the Lake View finance structure, which some districts have
already specified they would consider to do so, that the adequacy of financing for schools that
were completed as a outcome of the Lake View case would be all for not.

Running Head: Lake Hamilton School District


Citation
Annual Report to the Public 2014-2015 Lake Hamilton School District. (n.d.). Retrieved May 7,
2016, from https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1vRPdHwr63STXoEuAVwFDU0p7IhCW1PurV-BIRnnKT4/edit?pref=2&pli=1#slide=id.g6fed9352a_10_0
Arkansas Court Decision Jeopardizes Lake View Funding Reforms. (2013, April 11). Retrieved
May 7, 2016, from http://www.ruraledu.org/articles.php?id=3042
Arkansas K-12 Profile. (2016). Retrieved May 7, 2016, from
https://adedatabeta.arkansas.gov/Ark12
Dougan, M. B. (2015, October 19). Elementary and Secondary Education. Retrieved May 7,
2016, from http://www.encyclopediaofarkansas.net/encyclopedia/entry-detail.aspx?
entryID=389
Equity of Revenues and Expenditures in Arkansas School Districts. (2016, February 9).
Retrieved May 7, 2016, from http://www.arkleg.state.ar.us/assembly/2015/Meeting
Attachments/410/I14270/Equity of Revenues and Expenditures AR SDs.pdf
Federal Education Project. (n.d.). Retrieved May 7, 2016, from
http://febp.newamerica.net/k12/AR
Greenwood, R., & Deberg, V. (2013, November 20). Demographic Changes in the Arkansas
Public Schools: A Five Year Comparison. Retrieved May 7, 2016, from
http://www.officeforeducationpolicy.org/wp-content/uploads/DemographicChanges_2007-to-20122.pdf

Running Head: Lake Hamilton School District

Holley, M. J. (2015, July 14). Education Reform. Retrieved May 7, 2016, from
http://www.encyclopediaofarkansas.net/encyclopedia/entry-detail.aspx?entryID=2164
Kimbrell, T. W., Gullet, B., Ledbetter, S., Barth, J., Black, J., Mahony, A., . . . Zook, D. (2013,
December 16). Arkansas Department of Education. Retrieved May 7, 2016, from
http://www.arkansased.gov/public/userfiles/Fiscal_and_Admin_Services/Publication and
reports/ASR/Final_ASR_12_13.pdf
Lake Hamilton High School in Pearcy, Arkansas. (2016). Retrieved May 07, 2016, from
http://public-schools.startclass.com/l/4967/Lake-Hamilton-High-School
Lake Hamilton School District. (n.d.). Retrieved May 7, 2016, from
https://k12.niche.com/d/lake-hamilton-school-district-ar/

Running Head: Lake Hamilton School District

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