DeGrow Provides 9News Full Picture of Colorado K-12 Tax Funding

On Thursday, November 1, senior education policy analyst Ben DeGrow talked with Denver 9News education reporter Nelson Garcia about the disputed use of figures to account for Colorado school funding. (Click either picture to access the original story.)

9News Colorado Per Pupil Funding

“Colorado actually ranks closer to the middle than to the bottom,” DeGrow said. “You’ll see Colorado ranked even as high as 29th.”

DeGrow says the real per pupil funding total is much higher than $6,474.

“Federal dollars, it comes from additional local tax dollars and even other state programs that fund education,” DeGrow said. “When you look at it, it’s actually closer to $10,000 per student.”

The 29th ranking comes from Table H-9, page 54, of the National Education Association’s latest Rankings & Estimates publication.

The most recent complete picture of tax revenues for K-12 education is reported by the Colorado Department of Education (CDE) for the 2010-11 school year — in which K-12 education agencies received $8.292 billion in combined tax revenue. Based on the generous October 2010 student count of 843,316, the per-pupil amount is $9,833 (much “closer to $10,000 per student”).

The $6,474 “Per Pupil Revenue” figure cited in the story includes only a partial picture of tax revenues that Colorado K-12 schools receive. It is equivalent to counting only the primary breadwinner’s earnings as household income, even though about half as much more money comes in through a side job, home business and investment earnings. In the case of public schools, all $8.292 billion are raised through taxes, and all are available for officials to spend. Therefore, all dollars should be counted.

9News Colorado Per Pupil Funding


Posted by ben on Nov 2nd, 2012 and filed under In The News, K-12 Funding, TV Broadcasts. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response by filling following comment form or trackback to this entry from your site

7 Responses for “DeGrow Provides 9News Full Picture of Colorado K-12 Tax Funding”

  1. [...] technology.” Fewer teachers? Say what? It kind of goes along with an observation related to per-pupil funding that one of my Education Policy Center friends made yesterday on 9News: “We’ve been [...]

  2. [...] Channel 9News reported on school funding this past week and included a conversation with JeffCo resi…, an education policy analyst with the Independence Institute. [...]

  3. [...] Tomorrow is decision day for a lot of big people in Colorado, voting to decide on several local school tax issues. Those who think more money is needed to bolster an inefficient K-12 system marshal incomplete funding figures, but thankfully my Education Policy Center friend was there to provide 9News viewers with a full picture of Colorado K-12 tax revenues. [...]

  4. [...] the segment aired, DeGrow explained how he and his counterpart arrived at their figures. Gebhardt’s figure didn’t account for all [...]

  5. [...] needs to be repeated: “Public schools cost more than Americans think.” Bedrick cites Ben DeGrow’s recent interview with 9News disputing Colorado school funding figures, and makes a couple salient [...]

  6. [...] the segment aired, DeGrow explained how he and his counterpart arrived at their figures. Gebhardt’s figure didn’t account for all [...]

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