10 Things You’ll Learn with Our Education Finance Data Tool
April 6, 2017 - 3:51pm CDT
It’s not surprising that the education finance data tool is one of the most popular destinations on the OCPA website. This helpful, easy-to-use tool provides a wealth of data compiled from the Oklahoma Cost Accounting System and provided by the State Department of Education. I encourage you to spend some time on the website to see what you find. Here are 10 interesting facts I discovered on a recent visit.
- The Reydon school district spent $43,817 per student on 123 students while Epic One on One Charter School spent $4,786 per student on 5,631 students.
- In FY-2016 public school expenditures totaled $559,282,418 for “facilities acquisition and construction.” This is by far the fastest-growing category of school expenditures, having grown by 30 percent since 2012.
- In FY-2016 Oklahoma public schools devoted 44 percent of their total expenditures to instruction.
- Since 2012, instruction has grown by 2 percent while non-instructional operations have grown by 5 percent.
- The state’s two largest school districts (Oklahoma City and Tulsa) were given $1,171,697,399 to spend in 2016—but they spent only $912,953,502, leaving 22 percent of the funds citizens gave them sitting in their accounts.
- Schools are also tax collectors: In 2016 they spent $16,774,312 on “tax assessment and collection services.”
- Last year public schools spent $151,069,368 on “vehicle operation services” and another $46,920,407 on “vehicle servicing and maintenance.” Perhaps it’s time to start leasing vehicles and sharing them between districts.
- Since 2010, the amount of direct federal funding to the Oklahoma City school district has fallen from $99,313,879 to $61,683,025, despite increasing federal requirements for schools. Perhaps citizens should be complaining about the former Obama Administration instead of pointing solely to our state’s political leaders.
- The single largest cash item on statewide public school revenue sheets is account balances from prior years.
- In terms of spending per student, 11 of the 12 lowest-cost districts are charter school districts, ranging from $6,688 to $4,786.