Effects of state deregulation on the quantity and adequacy of school facilities
The general purpose of this study was to determine whether deregulation in Indiana via Public Law 25-1995 has had an adverse effect on either quantity or adequacy of new school construction. Data for projects approved during the three years preceding deregulation (1992-1994) were compared with data for projects approved during the three years following deregulation (1996-1998).Data for the projects were obtained from state agencies. They included the number of projects approved, the cost of each project, the size of each project, and school district enrollment, and the assessed valuation of each school district in each of the years studied. Major findings included: (a) The annual average number of approved projects prior to deregulation was 14 and the annual average following deregulation was 13. (b) The size of approved elementary level projects did not change following deregulation (it remained at 138 square feet per student). The size of approved middle level projects decreased from 196 square feet per student to 170 square feet per student after deregulation (a 14% decrease), and the size of middle schools became less uniform. The size of approved high school projects decreased from 230 square feet per student to 209 square feet per student after deregulation (a 9% decrease). (c) The average cost per square foot of approved elementary school projects declined from $113 to $109, and the average cost per square foot of approved high school projects declined from $119 to $107 after deregulation. The average cost per square foot of approved middle level projects increased from $105 to $110. (d) School district wealth did not have a significant effect on either the quantity of projects or the size of projects. (e) School district size did not have a significant effect on either the quantity of projects or the size of projects.Recommendations include additional long-term studies to address not only the effects of deregulation on school facilities, but also the effects of deregulation on educational programming.