As the nation weathers difficult economic times, many states are facing particularly heavy pressure to secure enough funding to provide a quality education for their students. In fact, some states have already proposed or announced budget cuts on precollegiate educational spending. One possible consequence of the current economic downturn is that school spending could decrease in the coming years.
In the 2009 edition of Quality Counts, the EPE Research Center examined per-pupil expenditure levels for 50 states and the District of Columbia. Using data from the 2005-06 school year, the research center found that 23 states and the District of Columbia spent more than $10,000 per pupil, adjusted for regional cost differences. Vermont ranked first in the nation with $15,139 in spending for each student, followed by Wyoming ($14,126) and New Jersey ($13,238). At the other end of the spectrum, Utah spent only $5,964 per student adjusted for regional costs, the lowest amount in the nation. The national average for per-pupil expenditures was $9,963.
For more state-by-state data on school finance and other topics, search the EPE Research Center’s Education Counts database.