Projections of State Budget Shortfalls on K-12 Public Education Spending

Posted by on February 23, 2009

Without intervention, public education may be on the road to ‘catastrophe’

A new report from the Center on Reinventing Public Education finds that states will probably cut an estimated 18.5 percent of spending over the next three years, an $80 billion drop that could eliminate 574,000 publicly funded jobs and severely impact public education, USA TODAY reports. The projection doesn’t account for the effect of stimulus money, but the author of the analysis, Marguerite Roza, says the cuts could be even more drastic, since she didn’t include shortfalls in local funding, which are currently too hard to track but account for 44 percent of total K-12 education spending, according to the report’s abstract. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan referred to the report as he stumped for education spending in the stimulus bill earlier in the week, saying that it “obviously confirms what we have feared: that there is so much at stake now and we’re really trying to stave off catastrophe.” “Projections of State Budget Shortfalls on K-12 Public Education Spending and Job Loss” estimates an 8.7 percent drop in total public education spending, $54 billion less on public K-12 education during the 2009 and 2010 calendar years than if spending had been held at budgeted FY 2009 levels.

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