About Bruce D. Baker

My current CV:B.Baker.Vitae.May_23_16

Note: This is not a “research” site. This site contains random thoughts, playing around with data, responses to ill-conceived arguments and poorly presented data and the occasional reference to or summary of actual research on education policy and finance. For a listing of my research projects and peer reviewed publications, see my vitae above or use scholar.google.com to do a search on my name. No-one is paying me to do stuff on this site (compensated grant & contract projects, and expert witness work listed on Vitae above). It’s just me. No guest bloggers… at least yet… just me. And no, I have no intention of ever trying to credit the content of this blog to my scholarly productivity. It just ain’t that scholarly. Hence my need to go silent for periods of time and actually work on scholarly stuff and more rigorous data analysis.

NOTE: I only post on other media sites by my own name,  by “schoolfinance101” or my twitter name “schlfinance101.” On youtube, I go by pointyheadedprof (based on a past reference in the KC Pitch).  I’ve noticed others posting my stuff and appreciate those who spread this information.  But, if it’s not from one of these names, it’s probably not me.

Bruce Baker is a Professor in the Graduate School of Education at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. From 1997 to 2008 he was a professor at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, KS. He is lead author with Preston Green (Penn State University) and Craig Richards (Teachers College, Columbia University) of Financing Education Systems, a graduate level textbook on school finance policy published by Merrill/Prentice-Hall. Professor Baker has written a multitude of peer reviewed research articles on state school finance policy, teacher labor markets, school leadership labor markets and higher education finance and policy. His recent work has focused on measuring cost variations associated with schooling contexts and student population characteristics, including ways to better design state school finance policies and local district allocation formulas (including Weighted Student Funding) for better meeting the needs of students.

Baker, along with Preston Green of Penn State University are co-authors of the chapter on Conceptions of Equity in the recently released Handbook of Research Education Finance and Policy, and co-authors of the chapter on the Politics of Education Finance in the Handbook of Education Politics and Policy and co-authors of the chapter on School Finance in the Handbook of Education Policy of the American Educational Research Association.

Professor Baker has also consulted for state legislatures, boards of education and other organizations on education policy and school finance issues and has testified in state school finance litigation in Kansas, Missouri and Arizona. He is a member of the Think Tank Review Panel, a group of academic researchers who conduct technical reviews of publicly released think tank reports on education policy issues.

Bruce Baker as described in The Pitch (Kansas City):

The tricky thing about a smarty pants like Baker is he uses statistics to back up his claims. (Justin Kendall, The Pitch, Kansas City)

Video Links:

1) Johns Hopkins discussion on informing state school finance reform

2) Opportunity & Equity – Shanker Institute

3) Harvard GSE Askwith Forum

4) On Race to the Top & Federal Policy:

5) On Statistical Measures of Teaching Effectiveness:

6) On the Effect of State School Finance Reforms

7) Stealth Inequities in School Funding (Center for American Progress)


8) New Jersey Principals and Supervisors Association Legislative Policy Forum

9) America’s Most Financially Disadvantaged School Districts