By Dave Timmerman
March 15, 2013
The district has a current budget of $30,000,000 (a little less actually).
The district has about 2200 students.
$30,000,000 divided by 2200 students equals $13,636 per student.
That $30,000,000 (a little less actually) includes all grant money, federal money, state money, miscellaneous money, and the Ketchikan Gateway Borough contribution (money).
I then wanted to know how we rated on the national level. Googled a bit. Found an article on CNN that stated the following:
Highest per-pupil spending
I don't really trust much in first read---but thankfully there is a link in the article that leads to the US Census (2010).
The numbers listed in the article are confirmed by the census site. Interesting read if you are looking to compare a lot of numbers to a lot of different things from a lot of places.
What I got out of this is that we are smack dab in the middle of the national average. We are also a couple thousand dollars below the Alaska state average. Not bad really, for an island in Alaska where the cost of living is quite a bit higher than the majority of the last three states I recently visited.
Do I think that more money put into a district means a better education? Not necessarily. There are lots of examples nation-wide where that is not the case.
Do I think that our district could use a little more money to do the best job they can? Yes. And that is looking at it from the bottom of the budget all the way to the top. From the first page to the last. It just can t be a good thing to loose art, music, more janitors, vocational classes or AP classes, and THAT is the point the district is at.
I agree with Agnes Moran when she states, The real solution to the dilemma of education funding lies in getting the State to live up to its Constitutional responsibility for education and fully fund basic need for all school districts.
I fully support the Borough Assembly as they lobby the state on funding rules that I also think are inequitable.
But until the Assembly has success on that fron t--- we the community --- have to make sure the right thing is done for our kids.
About: "Citizen, father, coach, concerned."
Editor's Note: Dave Timmerman is a member of the Ketchikan School Board.
Received March 14, 2013 - Published March 15, 2013
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