By Dan Walters
One of the Capitol’s perpetual debates is over how much California spends to educate its 6.2 million elementary and high school students, especially in relationship to other states.
Education groups, led by the influential California Teachers Association, have complained for years that the state is near the bottom in per-pupil spending, but with recent and sharp increases in spending, California has climbed rapidly in state-to-state comparisons.
A new report by the National Education Association, the national teachers union, shows that California is now 29th in per-pupil spending, just a few dollars under the national average.
When all forms of school spending – such as capital outlay and repaying school construction bonds – are included in the calculations, California’s per-pupil spending hits the national average.