Education Funding Report Roundup

Study Puts Price Tag on School Disparity

By Lesli A. Maxwell — August 28, 2012 1 min read

Public schools spend, on average, $334 more on white students than on nonwhite students, a new analysis of federal education data reveals.

That per-pupil spending disparity is even greater when comparing schools that are mostly white with those having mostly nonwhite enrollments, according to the report, published this month by the Center for American Progress, a Washington think tank. In schools where 90 percent or more of students are white, per-pupil spending was $733 more than in those with 90 percent-plus nonwhite enrollment. One-third of the students in the study attend such racially isolated schools, the report says.

The analysis draws on federal school-level spending data that include actual spending on teacher salaries, a new reporting requirement in the 2009 American Reinvestment and Recovery Act. Ary Spatig-Amerikaner conducted the analysis as part of her graduate work at the University of California, Berkeley. She links the spending imbalances to lower salaries earned by teachers in majority-minority schools, who tend to be less experienced than those in mostly white schools.

The author argues that a flaw in federal education law intended to guard against spending inequities—the so-called “comparability” loophole in Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act—exacerbates such problems. It directs districts to exclude differences in teacher salaries tied to years of experience when determining if they are providing comparable services to their high- and low-poverty schools.

Related Tags:

A version of this article appeared in the August 29, 2012 edition of Education Week as Study Puts Price Tag on School Disparity

Events

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
Professional Development Webinar
Building Leadership Excellence Through Instructional Coaching
Join this webinar for a discussion on instructional coaching and ways you can link your implement or build on your program.
Content provided by Whetstone Education/SchoolMint
Teaching Webinar Tips for Better Hybrid Learning: Ask the Experts What Works
Register and ask your questions about hybrid learning to our expert panel.
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
Families & the Community Webinar
Family Engagement for Student Success With Dr. Karen Mapp
Register for this free webinar to learn how to empower and engage families for student success featuring Karen L. Mapp.
Content provided by Panorama Education & PowerMyLearning

EdWeek Top School Jobs

2021-2022 Teacher (Districtwide)
Dallas, TX, US
Dallas Independent School District
[2021-2022] Founding Middle School Academic Dean
New York, NY, US
DREAM Charter School
DevOps Engineer
Portland, OR, US
Northwest Evaluation Association
Senior Business Analyst - 12 Month Contract
Portland, OR, US
Northwest Evaluation Association

Read Next

Education Funding Nearly Half of School Finance Officials Report 'Sufficient' Federal COVID-19 Aid, For Now
A survey of local K-12 administrators also found "addressing learning loss" and ed-tech to be primary uses of relief dollars.
5 min read
Illustration of a helping hand with dollar bill bridging economy gap during coronavirus pandemic, assisting business people to overcome financial difficulties.
Feodora Chiosea/iStock/Getty Images Plus
Education Funding Return of Pet Projects in Congress Could Mean More Money for Schools to Address COVID-19
"Community funding projects," also known as earmarks, could support district and nonprofit K-12 projects.
3 min read
In this Jan. 4, 2020 photo, Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., speaks during a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington. On Thursday, Dec. 3, 2020, DeLauro was elected chair of the U.S. House Appropriations Committee by fellow Democrats, a position colleagues say will make her the most powerful politician from Connecticut in Washington in generations.
Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., speaks during a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington last year. On Friday, Feb. 26, 2021, DeLauro revealed a proposal to restore the practice of earmarks after a decade-long ban in Congress.
Al Drago/Pool Photo via AP
Education Funding Concern About Unspent COVID-19 School Aid Continues as Congress Moves Toward More Relief
A congressional analysis has spurred discontent about how fast money will be spent, but some warn against over-simplifying the situation.
5 min read
Thermometers, gloves, and cleaning swabs sit on a table at the entrance to the Frederickson KinderCare daycare center, in Tacoma, Wash on May 27, 2020.
Thermometers, gloves, and cleaning swabs sit on a table at the entrance to the Frederickson KinderCare daycare center, in Tacoma, Wash on May 27, 2020. As a precaution against the spread of the coronavirus, workers and children have their temperatures checked every day before they enter the building.
Ted S. Warren/AP
Education Funding Opinion What's It Take for Philanthropy to Help Rural Schools?
Place-based philanthropy has enormous potential to revitalize rural communities. The trick is, it’s tough to get this sort of approach right.
4 min read
Image shows a multi-tailed arrow hitting the bullseye of a target.
DigitalVision Vectors/Getty