Report analyizing where education dollars go, and changes over time

September 26, 2014

Editor’s Note:  The New York State Association of School Business Officials released a report this month entitled, “Where Does the Education Dollar Go? How Has This Changed Over Time?” examining NYS school district spending and funding over a ten-year period.  Below NCNOW has reprinted its “Executive Summary” and “Conclusion,” and has provided a link to the entire document.

Executive Summary

This study examines school district spending and funding over a ten-year period. The study identifies both a shift in the state and local shares of funding our public schools and the disproportionate growth of school spending in non-general education categories.

In 2012-2013, a total of $58 billion in federal, state and local resources was spent to support our almost 700 public school districts, or $21,118 per pupil for approximately three million students. Of this support, $8,563 per pupil came from the state. Over the past decade the local share (mostly property taxes) of school district revenue has grown five percent, while the state share has declined four percent and federal aid has declined by almost two percent.

Of all the spending categories studied, teacher pension costs grew the most (299 percent over ten years), while tuition paid to other districts for resident students declined the most (26 percent less over same time period). Spending on special education grew 28 percent over the six years for which information was available, while general education spending grew 19 percent.

Reductions in spending on general education may contribute to the increased challenges school districts face in strengthening their general education programs, providing the opportunity for all students to receive a sound basic education, and implementing state-of-the-art learning standards.

To view the full report, click HERE.

Conclusion

Although New York State school districts enjoyed a healthy $21,118 per pupil in education revenues in 2012-13, a number of stresses are evident in New York’s education spending. The growth in school spending has slowed sharply in recent years with reduced State Aid and the Tax Cap. Spending on fringe benefits has increased for instructional and non-instructional staff as well as spending on debt service principal for school construction. The number of students with disabilities grew one percent while the number of general education pupils declined three percent and spending grew at a slightly faster rate for special education pupils. These stresses may contribute to the increased challenges school districts face in strengthening their general education programs, providing the opportunity for all students to receive a sound basic education, and implementing state-of-the-art learning standards.

 


Comments(9):
We encourage civil, civic discourse. All comments are reviewed before publication to assure that this standard is met.

“Of all the spending categories studied, teacher pension costs grew the most (299 percent over ten years)”. 

If we are not going to address this, addressing anything else is a short term band aid.

By The elephant in the room on 10/01/2014 at 6:13 pm

The community spent a lot of money building Seven Bridges Middle School, but yet the administration is not allowed to turn the AC on to accommodate both the students and staff because Bell School does not have AC. Does this make sense? Additionally, heating season will be here before we know it. Has anyone paid attention to the amount of heating oil that our Schools burn? I think it is time to tell both the teachers and the students to dress warmer for a building that will be kept on the cool side. Why should we walk into any of our Schools on a hot fall day or a mild Winter day and sweat like it is the middle of summer. Would it not be healthier to keep the Schools on the cool side rather then on the hot side. The savings in oil alone could hire three or four more teachers. As a community do we oppose the idea of our students and teachers dressing a little warmer by wearing a sweater or a fleece? Would it be wise for one of our Schools to be equiped with a mulch burning boiler that also runs on heating oil. The emissions is less than an oil fired burner, and new castle produces a lot of mulch that can feed it for free. Would it be such a bad idea to heat one of our Schools on the amount of mulch and fallen trees that the Municipality produces. Team Green are you thinking about these kinds of ideas?

By AC needed on 10/02/2014 at 12:57 am

“AC needed” points out that the schools are often too hot in the wintertime. State law (section 602.4) says that indoor spaces “shall be supplied with heat during the period from September 15th to May 31st to maintain a temperature of not less than 65°F (18°C) during the period the spaces are occupied” - I’d venture that our schools are a lot warmer than 65°F.

By maggie christ on 10/03/2014 at 1:31 pm

Our kids come home from School because they are overheated during the coldest days, and both fall and spring time can be very uncomfortable due to extreme heat. We need to invest in our schools by placing dollars in a direction that installs new building systems that are better at regulating HVAC issues and air quality. We should explore and place on trial runs the effort to lower the temperature in our schools. This should be a top priority! What a great comment! Bravo to @ AC needed!

By Our kids on 10/05/2014 at 12:23 am

What we really need to do is finally realize what a mistake it was to build another middle school. We need to Sell Bell to a developer who will help revitalize downtown. Then we can turn on the AC when at 7 Bridges when needed.

By bob on 10/08/2014 at 10:37 am

The New York State Teachers Retirement System covers 90% of that 299% increase. The money new teachers pay in for ten years is invested by NYSTRS and is paid out by them. CCSD only pays 10%.

By Pension costs on 10/08/2014 at 1:03 pm

And do taxpayers ultimately pay for the NYSTRS?
Stop the spin.

By bob on 10/08/2014 at 9:06 pm

Your comment is ridiculous.  The taxpayers fund the NYSTRS out of MANDATORY % of Salary payments each year for each teacher.  This year that payment was over 20% of salaries or more than $10 million just for Chappaqua.  You are trying to deceive the taxpayer.

By To Pension Costs on 10/10/2014 at 1:58 pm

The schools’ administrators are not honest brokers.

By bob on 10/10/2014 at 8:41 pm


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