Department of Educational Administration


Date of this Version

Spring 5-2013

Document Type



Matthew L. Blomstedt, Ph.D., "The Legislative Purposes and Intent of the Common Levy in Nebraska's Learning Community," University of Nebraska-Lincoln, 2013


A DISSERTATION Presented to the Faculty of The Graduate College at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy, Major: Educational Studies (Educational Leadership and Higher Education), Under the Supervision of Professor Marilyn Grady. Lincoln, Nebraska: May, 2013

Copyright (c) 2013 Matthew L. Blomstedt


The purpose of this historical study was to establish the purposes and intent of the common levy in Nebraska’s learning community. The development of this unique regional educational structure consisting of eleven school districts in the Omaha, Nebraska metropolitan area is central to the study. The research detailed the context of the decisions made by the Nebraska Legislature to establish and implement the learning community law from 2005 and 2012. Specifically, the study focused on the establishment of a regional tax base, the common levy, as a response to boundary and finance instability that persisted in the Omaha area. The research relied on written news accounts and legislative records. The findings include implications for researchers, educational leaders, and policy makers who seek to address complex finance and urban growth dynamics that impact educational structures. Although the policy history does not seek to judge the effectiveness of the learning community or common levy, it is intended to contribute to future evaluation of such policies.

Adviser: Marilyn Grady