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March 17, 2003

New data: New York spends more per pupil on schools than all states

New York State public schools spend more on each student than in any other state in the nation, the latest data from the U.S. Census Bureau show.

New York State spent almost $11,000 per pupil in 2001, the last year for which data are available, the Census Bureau reported March 11. That figure is almost $4,000-or 55 percent-higher than the national average of $7,284.

New York State's spending per pupil was 8.8 percent higher than in 2000. In contrast, the average increase nationally was 6.6 percent.

New Jersey ($10,893 per pupil, an increase of 5.9 percent over 2000), the District of Columbia ($10,852, unchanged), and Connecticut ($9,236, up 5 percent) followed New York on the list.

State government contributed most of the nation's school spending: $201 billion, the Census Bureau said. Local governments contributed $173 billion, and the federal government paid $29 billion.

Nationwide school spending reached $410 billion in 2001, which was up $30 billion from the year before. School construction spending and school-district debt both rose over 13 percent.

School-district debt reached $201.6 billion, an increase of 13 percent. Texas, California, New York, Pennsylvania, and Michigan borrowed more than $2 billion each for building construction, reconstruction, and refinancing.