June 8, 2018

CT education funding ranked 4th in U.S.

Photo | Contributed
Photo | Contributed
Bulkeley High School seniors Emeli Bueno (left) and Yashoda Mohan took part in a recent Financial Reality Fair at the school in Hartford's South End.

Connecticut ranks fourth among U.S. states in education funding and equity, according to a new report.

In a report by Education Week, published by Editorial Projects in Education, an independent, nonprofit publisher on education, New England's K-12 schools recorded the best school funding scores in the country.

The report says Connecticut school funding earned the best score in New England with a B+ grade, including a score of 85.9 in equity and 89.7 in spending. Vermont and Maine slightly trailed with overall school funding scores of 86.5 and 85.2, respectively.

Wyoming led the country with a school finance score of 91.4 and grade of A-. New York and New Jersey schools followed with scores of of 89.4 and 88.5, respectively. Idaho school's recorded the worst markings, with a 59.7 score and grade of D-.

The country's overall school funding grade is C, or a score of 74.4.

In fiscal year 2015, Connecticut spent more than $11.3 billion on education at the local, state and federal levels, according to a report by the National Center for Education Statistics. The state that year spent over $19,000 per student, the report said.

The governor's office attributed Connecticut's high ranking this week to a pair of education reform programs, including the Alliance District Program and the Commissioner's Network, that launched in 2012.

The Alliance program provides investment for the state's 33 lowest-performing districts serving more than 200,000 students at over 410 schools. Since its inception, the program has spent $678 million, including $136 million in 2017-18.

Meanwhile, the Commissioner's Network, a partnership between local stakeholders and the state Department of Education, has spent more than $59 million since the program began.

"Connecticut has made real progress in educational outcomes over the past seven years," Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said. "While we have more work to do to make sure all students graduate prepared for the jobs of the 21st century, we should be proud of the progress we have made as a state."

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