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Education Revenue by State

An analysis of the most recent Annual Survey of School Systems Finances data reveals where public elementary-secondary school systems get their funding from and where they spend it.

School finances are not the same across the nation; schools in some states receive much larger sums of money than other states, where the schools' revenues come from differs and how schools choose to spend their funding varies significantly across the nation. 

The U.S. Census Bureau's Annual Survey of School Systems Finances (ASSSF) gathers data on school revenues for all public elementary-secondary school systems. The most recent data is for the 2018 fiscal year and it was released on May 11, 2020. Below are some of the data's highlights.

NOTE: See also ASSSF data for 2017.

Revenue Per Pupil

During the 2018 fiscal year, public elementary-secondary schools' revenue per pupil was more than $2,000 greater than the national average spending per pupil. An average of $14,840 was revenued per pupil in the United States during 2018, but some states, like New York and Washington D.C. received nearly double that amount while others, like Utah and Idaho, were far below the national average.

Schools in Washington D.C. received $31,280 per pupil, the most of all states, followed by New York, Connecticut, New Jersey and Vermont. That's the same top five as 2017.

The bottom five were also the same as the year before. Schools in North Carolina, Arizona, Oklahoma, Utah and Idaho, once again, received the least, with Idaho bottoming out the list at just $8,980 per pupil (a nearly $400 increase from the year prior).

School Revenue Sources

Nationally, federal funding accounted for nearly 7.7 percent of education funding, with the remainder coming from state and local sources. 

[more data pulls from Tableau table of table 11 - federal, state, local revenue source percentages]

Zoe is the digital editor for Governing.
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