Education per student spending in Missouri lagging

1 year 10 months 1 week ago January 30, 2015 Jan 30, 2015 Friday, January 30 2015 Friday, January 30, 2015 8:18:00 PM CST in News
By: Spencer Wilson, KOMU 8 Reporter

COLUMBIA - Missouri is the Show-Me State, but it's not showing students a lot of money for their education.

A new report from the National Center of Education Statistics shows Missouri spending less than most states on education per student.

In 2011, Missouri spent $8,716 per student, after median inflation-adjustments. The lowest total belonged to Utah, who only spent around $6,000, and Alaska spent the most, spending roughly $25,000.

A majority of the states in 2011 spent more per student than Missouri, but some say that might not speak to its education program well.

Roger Dorsor with the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education said those numbers might not show how good of a job the state is doing in the education department.

"Part of that could be the location of the state, the salaries are much higher, so their cost per student is going to be much higher," Dorsor said. "But they may not be doing any better job compared to a district that may be spending a little less." 

According to DESE, Missouri has continued to increase spending on education each year for the last five years. It spent about 3 million dollars in 2014. 

The report from the NCES shows however that Missouri had a 4% decrease in spending per student between 2010 and 2011. 

Dorsor said that increasing costs in technology and salaries would continue to cost education programs around the nation more money. 

A student at Hickman High School said that while Missouri is spending less per student, he doesn't think that his school is functioning just fine with it's current funding.  

"Honestly I think we have some pretty good facilities here at Hickman," said senior Daniel Veros. "We've got a computer lab that's fine, and with the career center we just added on, instead of traveling over to Rock Bridge we have it in house here now, and that's really convenient for student who take a lot of classes there every day."

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