Chapter 9.8


How is Concentrated Poverty Calculated?

The final poverty weight in the BEF formula is for concentrated poverty. The concentrated poverty weight impacts a limited number of school districts—just 44 school districts in 2018-19. It applies only to those school districts that have at least 30% of their students living in acute poverty—or below the federal poverty line.

The number of school districts impacted by the concentrated poverty weight fluctuates slightly each year, and because the threshold is set at 30% and acute poverty percentages can change from year to year, it’s possible for a school district to be eligible for the weight one year and not eligible the next.

Statewide, there are 148,417 students or 8.70% of total ADMs living in concentrated poverty.

Click on the image link below to view our Infogram illustrating over time the total statewide ADMs in concentrated poverty and the number of districts that received additional weighted ADMs for concentrated poverty.


The concentrated poverty weight recognizes that the educational challenges for students—and the corresponding educational supports and resources—are magnified when a large subset of the student population is living below the poverty line.

As a result, school districts that have 30% or more of their students living in concentrated poverty have an additional weight of 0.3 applied to each of their ADMs living in acute poverty. Effectively, this means that in school districts with concentrated poverty, each student in acute poverty receives a weight of 0.9. Like the other poverty measures, after multiplying by the weight, the product is the “add on” ADMs from concentrated poverty.

For example, Pottstown SD in Montgomery County had an acute poverty metric of 39.22% in the BEF formula, qualifying them for the concentrated poverty weighted ADMs. To calculate the school district’s concentrated poverty weighted ADMs, the formula multiplies the 39.22% by the district’s most recent fiscal year ADMs of 3,330.8 and by the concentrated poverty weight of 0.3, resulting in 1,326.2 concentrated poverty weighted ADMs.

Click on the map to see if any of your school districts qualify for the concentrated poverty weight and, if so, how many add on ADMs result from the concentrated poverty weight in the BEF formula.
  • Each of our maps illustrate data relevant to the topic of the day for each school district. You can find the map legend at the top left of your screen after opening the map. 
  • Hover over any school district with your mouse to open a pop-up label providing information associated with that school district.
  • You can filter school districts by locale type (urban, suburban, town, or rural), by intermediate unit, and occasionally by other factors as well.