School & District Management What the Research Says

State Ed. Spending at Odds With Public Schools Support

By Sarah D. Sparks — October 22, 2019 1 min read
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State spending on schools has become detached from public support for them, finds a new study in Education Researcher, a journal published by the American Educational Research Association.

Harvard University researcher David Houston tracked the relationship between public support of schools and state per-pupil spending from 1986 to 2013. He found that through the 1980s, states with higher public support for education spending tended to have higher per-pupil spending. But during the next decade, that reversed, and through the 2000s, states with low per-pupil spending increased their support at a slower rate even as public support for school spending rose steadily in their communities. States spent less in proportion to rising federal K-12 spending in the wake of the No Child Left Behind Act and the post-recession stimulus in the 2000s, suggesting states may see bigger education shortfalls if they cannot make up the difference as federal education spending slows.

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A version of this article appeared in the October 23, 2019 edition of Education Week as State Ed. Spending at Odds With Public Schools Support


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