Understanding the Fundamental Cost of Education

By Charles A. Luke, Ed.D.

In today’s volatile economic and political climate education stands out as a topic that seems to polarize people in one camp or the other. Of all the educational issues that we disagree about, the cost of education appears to be one of the most divisive.   Some people believe that schools receive plenty of funding and are merely wasting money on frivolous expenditures while others think that schools are underfunded and need even more money to provide world-class educational opportunities for kids.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics or NCES (2011) the U.S. spends around $600 billion per year to educate its public school students. Texas spends over $54 billion of that to educate their approximately 4.6 million school children (Moak, Casey and Associates, 2011). While both sides of this often heated argument may have their points it is helpful to know just where educational dollars go and why they are spent that way. The following expenses are just a few things that go into providing education to students.

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