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Chapter 8. State Indicators

Elementary and Secondary Education

Elementary and Secondary Public School Expenditures as a Percentage of Gross Domestic Product



Findings

  • The 2010 national average for spending on elementary and secondary education was 3.65% of the gross domestic product (GDP), an increase from 3.28% in 2000. Among individual states, the value for this indicator ranged from 2.47% to 5.67% of the state’s GDP in 2010, indicating that some states were directing a much higher percentage of their resources toward elementary and secondary education.
  • Spending for elementary and secondary public education as a percentage of the state’s GDP decreased in 10 states during the 2000–10 period.
  • Several states spending the highest percentage of their GDP on elementary and secondary education had relatively small student populations (100,000–300,000 students), suggesting that some level of expenditure for educational infrastructure (e.g., assessments of curriculum development) may be largely independent of the size of the student population.


Description

This indicator represents the relative amount of resources that state governments expend to support public education in prekindergarten through grade 12. It is calculated by dividing a state’s expenditures for elementary and secondary public schools by the state’s GDP. Expenditures include instruction and instruction-related costs, student support services, administration, and operations and exclude funds for school construction and other capital outlays, debt service, and programs outside of public elementary and secondary education. State and local support represent the largest sources of funding for elementary and secondary education.

Expenditure data on public elementary and secondary education are reported by the National Center for Education Statistics, Department of Education. They are part of the National Public Education Financial Survey and are included in the Common Core of Data, a comprehensive annual national statistical database that covers approximately 100,000 public elementary and secondary schools and 18,000 regular school districts in the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and outlying areas, as well as Department of Defense Schools. Most of the data are obtained from administrative records maintained by state education agencies.

Expenditures are expressed in actual dollars and their data year is the end date of the academic year. For example, expenditure data for 2010 represent expenditures for the 2009–10 academic year. GDP data refer to the 2010 calendar year.


Data Table

Table 8-10
Elementary and secondary public school expenditures as a percentage of gross domestic product, by state: 2000, 2005, and 2010
 
Public school expenditures ($thousands)   State GDP ($millions) School expenditures/
GDP (%)
State 2000 2005 2010 2000 2005 2010 2000 2005 2010
 
United States 323,808,910 424,562,096 525,497,899 9,884,170 12,539,116 14,388,814 3.28 3.39 3.65
Alabama 4,176,082 5,164,406 6,670,517 116,009 150,968 172,842 3.60 3.42 3.86
Alaska 1,183,499 1,442,269 2,084,019 25,911 37,774 47,910 4.57 3.82 4.35
Arizona 4,262,182 6,451,870 8,587,889* 161,792 222,569 247,329 2.63 2.90 3.47
Arkansas 2,380,331 3,546,999 4,459,910* 68,335 88,501 103,170 3.48 4.01 4.32
California 38,129,479 50,918,654 58,248,662* 1,319,472 1,688,949 1,845,249 2.89 3.01 3.16
Colorado 4,400,888 5,994,440 7,429,302 172,037 217,329 254,551 2.56 2.76 2.92
Connecticut 5,402,868 7,080,396 8,853,337* 163,455 196,307 221,767 3.31 3.61 3.99
Delaware 937,630 1,299,349 1,549,812 40,614 54,422 62,832 2.31 2.39 2.47
District of Columbia 780,192 1,023,952 1,451,870 58,267 82,488 103,745 1.34 1.24 1.40
Florida 13,885,988 19,042,877 23,349,314* 481,239 681,225 727,972 2.89 2.80 3.21
Georgia 9,158,624 12,528,856 15,730,409* 293,966 363,177 402,006 3.12 3.45 3.91
Hawaii 1,213,695 1,648,086 2,110,864 41,450 56,901 67,274 2.93 2.90 3.14
Idaho 1,302,817 1,618,215 1,961,857* 36,147 48,683 55,639 3.60 3.32 3.53
Illinois 14,462,773 18,658,428 24,695,773* 474,520 568,114 642,769 3.05 3.28 3.84
Indiana 7,110,930 9,108,931 9,921,243* 198,238 239,321 270,739 3.59 3.81 3.66
Iowa 3,264,336 3,808,200 4,794,308 93,312 119,998 138,378 3.50 3.17 3.46
Kansas 2,971,814 3,718,153 4,731,676 85,722 104,869 126,640 3.47 3.55 3.74
Kentucky 3,837,794 4,812,591 6,091,814 113,233 138,772 161,064 3.39 3.47 3.78
Louisiana 4,391,214 5,554,766 7,393,452* 131,289 196,917 227,373 3.34 2.82 3.25
Maine 1,604,438 2,056,266 2,356,312* 36,438 45,520 51,343 4.40 4.52 4.59
Maryland 6,545,135 8,682,586 11,883,677* 182,923 247,241 295,981 3.58 3.51 4.02
Massachusetts 8,511,065 11,357,857 14,067,276* 273,006 323,314 376,908 3.12 3.51 3.73
Michigan 13,994,294 16,353,921 17,227,515 337,459 375,753 367,107 4.15 4.35 4.69
Minnesota 6,140,442 7,310,284 8,927,288* 188,818 237,813 268,578 3.25 3.07 3.32
Mississippi 2,510,376 3,243,888 3,990,876* 65,625 81,360 95,763 3.83 3.99 4.17
Missouri 5,655,531 7,115,207 8,923,448* 180,967 216,336 243,876 3.13 3.29 3.66
Montana 994,770 1,193,182 1,498,252 21,633 30,054 36,521 4.60 3.97 4.10
Nebraska 1,926,500 2,512,914 3,247,970 57,333 72,505 90,910 3.36 3.47 3.57
Nevada 1,875,467 2,722,264 3,592,994 75,895 114,478 124,838 2.47 2.38 2.88
New Hampshire 1,418,503 2,021,144 2,576,956 44,161 53,693 61,147 3.21 3.76 4.21
New Jersey 13,327,645 19,669,576 24,261,392 350,110 430,246 483,007 3.81 4.57 5.02
New Mexico 1,890,274 2,554,638 3,217,328 50,294 67,763 77,686 3.76 3.77 4.14
New York 28,433,240 38,866,853 50,251,461* 769,291 959,867 1,136,417 3.70 4.05 4.42
North Carolina 7,713,293 9,567,000 12,200,362 281,542 354,664 426,875 2.74 2.70 2.86
North Dakota 638,946 786,870 1,000,095 18,266 24,670 35,357 3.50 3.19 2.83
Ohio 12,974,575 17,167,866 19,801,670 380,895 444,083 465,679 3.41 3.87 4.25
Oklahoma 3,382,581 4,161,024 5,192,124 91,273 120,529 147,649 3.71 3.45 3.52
Oregon 3,896,287 4,458,028 5,401,667 113,180 143,429 181,523 3.44 3.11 2.98
Pennsylvania 14,120,112 18,711,100 22,733,518 395,602 482,200 558,818 3.57 3.88 4.07
Rhode Island 1,393,143 1,825,900 2,136,582* 33,584 44,189 48,572 4.15 4.13 4.40
South Carolina 4,087,355 5,312,739 6,566,165 115,443 141,877 162,292 3.54 3.74 4.05
South Dakota 737,998 916,563 1,115,861 24,038 31,549 38,297 3.07 2.91 2.91
Tennessee 4,931,734 6,446,691 7,894,661 177,540 224,288 253,602 2.78 2.87 3.11
Texas 25,098,703 31,919,107 42,621,886 731,064 968,553 1,226,714 3.43 3.30 3.47
Utah 2,102,655 2,627,022 3,635,085 69,489 90,616 118,225 3.03 2.90 3.07
Vermont 870,198 1,177,478 1,463,792 18,039 22,743 25,809 4.82 5.18 5.67
Virginia 7,757,598 10,705,162 13,193,633 261,759 356,370 422,763 2.96 3.00 3.12
Washington 6,399,883 7,870,979 9,832,913 227,704 279,333 342,702 2.81 2.82 2.87
West Virginia 2,086,937 2,527,767 3,315,648 41,386 51,857 62,732 5.04 4.87 5.29
Wisconsin 6,852,178 8,435,359 9,918,809 177,355 218,689 245,415 3.86 3.86 4.04
Wyoming 683,918 863,423 1,334,655 17,050 26,250 36,459 4.01 3.29 3.66
 
Puerto Rico 2,086,414 2,865,945 3,464,044* 69,208 86,158 NA 3.00 3.30 NA
 

* = value is affected by the redistribution of reported values to correct for missing data items and/or to distribute state direct-support expenditures; NA = not available.

GDP = gross domestic product.

SOURCES: National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), NCES Common Core of Data, National Public Education Financial Survey (various years); Bureau of Economic Analysis, Gross Domestic Product data (June 2013); Government of Puerto Rico, Office of the Governor (various years); United Nations Statistics Division.

Science and Engineering Indicators 2014


State Data Tool

The state data tool allows interactive exploration of the 58 indicators in this chapter. Users have the ability to choose and explore a single indicator in-depth, compare multiple indicators for preselected groups, customize their own graphics, or download data tables. Click the button below to get started.

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