Elementary & Secondary Education

 

Elementary & Secondary Education

Information relating to K-12 education funding and policy. In fiscal 2011, Elementary and secondary (K-12) education represented the largest category of state general fund spending at 35.0 percent. However due to rising health care costs, K-12 education is now the second largest component of total state spending at 20.1 percent, slightly below Medicaid’s 23.6 percent of state budgets. In the coming years, states will likely face changes in K-12 education funding policies as Congress reauthorizes the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, better known as No Child Left Behind.

Staff Contact: Kathryn Vesey White

NASBO Publications

  • This report finds that the recent improvement in the national economy has not translated to strong growth in total state spending. This is largely due to the fact that state revenues have not increased as fast as Recovery Act funds have declined, leading to a unique situation in which total state expenditure growth has slowed during the same time that the national economy has been improving.
  • This brief reviews some approaches used in states to ensure the efficient use of school district K-12 spending. Elementary and secondary education spending, accounting for about 36 percent of all general fund spending, is at the forefront both as a fiscal and policy issue. States take various approaches as a means to evaluate the efficient use of school funds, including undertaking school efficiency studies.
  • Although state fiscal conditions continue their slow improvement in fiscal 2012, they are likely to remain constrained due to the lack of a strong national economic recovery and the withdrawal of Recovery Act funds. This slow improvement in state finances is highlighted by the 38 states that reported general fund spending growth in 2011 and the 43 states that reported spending growth for 2012. However, 29 states still have lower general fund spending in fiscal 2012 compared to the pre-recession levels of fiscal 2008.

Recently Released Reports