School & District Management

In Short

March 28, 2001 1 min read

Analysts often gauge the federal government’s support for education by the size of the U.S. Department of Education’s budget.

But those funds represent only a small part of total federal spending on education. A report in the winter issue of Education Statistics Quarterly offers a reminder of just how small.

The journal is put out by the Education Department’s National Center for Education Statistics. In it, researcher Charlene M. Hoffman points out that the $40.7 billion that Uncle Sam spent on the department in the 2000 fiscal year represented only about a third of total federal spending on education, which came to $122.7 billion that year.

For More Information

The full report, “Federal Support for Education: Fiscal Years 1980 to 2000,” is available from the NCES.

The total figure includes education-related money that went to other agencies, such as the U.S. Department of Defense and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, as well as “off budget’’ funds, such as the loan capital the federal government provides through national student-loan programs.

From 1990 to 2000, Ms. Hoffman found, Education Department funding rose 39 percent in inflation-adjusted dollars. But total federal support for education increased even more—by 55 percent—over that period.

After the Education Department, the next-biggest federal spender on education was the HHS Department, which provided $16.5 billion for education in fiscal 2000. Next on the list was the U.S. Department of Agriculture with $10.8 billion. Much of that went for the federal school lunch and breakfast programs.

Yet as big as the federal education pie is, it still represents only a small share of all school spending in this country. Ms. Hoffman notes, for example, that the estimated federal share of expenditures on elementary and secondary schools declined from 12 percent in fiscal 1980 to 9 percent two decades later.

—Debra Viadero


Coverage of research is underwritten in part by a grant from the Spencer Foundation.

Related Tags:

A version of this article appeared in the March 28, 2001 edition of Education Week as In Short

Events

Jobs The EdWeek Top School Jobs Virtual Career Fair
Find teaching jobs and other jobs in K-12 education at the EdWeek Top School Jobs virtual career fair.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Curriculum Webinar
How to Power Your Curriculum With Digital Books
Register for this can’t miss session looking at best practices for utilizing digital books to support their curriculum.
Content provided by OverDrive
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Student Well-Being Webinar
Embracing Student Engagement: The Pathway to Post-Pandemic Learning
As schools emerge from remote learning, educators are understandably worried about content and skills that students would otherwise have learned under normal circumstances. This raises the very real possibility that children will face endless hours
Content provided by Newsela

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

School & District Management Opinion Are Your Leadership Practices Good Enough for Racial Justice?
Scratch being a hero. Instead, build trust and reach beyond school walls, write Jennifer Cheatham and John B. Diamond.
Jennifer Cheatham & John B. Diamond
5 min read
Illustration of leadership.
Collage by Laura Baker/Education Week (Images: DigitalVision Vectors, iStock, Getty)
School & District Management We Pay Superintendents Big Bucks and Expect Them to Succeed. But We Hardly Know Them
National data is skimpy, making it hard to know what influences superintendents' decisions to move on, retire, or how long they stay. Why?
8 min read
Conceptual image of tracking with data.
marcoventuriniautieri/iStock/Getty
School & District Management Data For the First Time in the Pandemic, a Majority of 4th Graders Learn in Person Full Time
The latest monthly federal data still show big racial and socioeconomic differences in who has access to full-time in-person instruction.
3 min read
Student with backpack.
surasaki/iStock/Getty
School & District Management From Our Research Center To Offer Remote Learning in the Fall or Not? Schools Are Split
An EdWeek Research Center survey shows that nearly 4 of every 10 educators say their schools will not offer any remote instruction options.
4 min read
Image of a teacher working with a student through a screen session.
Ridofranz/iStock/Getty