306 E. Capitol Ave.
Pierre, SD 57501
South Dakota ranks last in state funding devoted to K-12 education, according to a U.S. Census Bureau report released May 24.
"Public School Finances: 2005" contains detailed public school finance information for the 2004-05 school year. According to the report, South Dakota paid $2,805 per student that year, the lowest amount provided by any state.
State funds accounted for just one-third of all the revenue collected by South Dakota schools that year. The federal government contributed $1,415 per student, the fifth highest total in the country, and local property tax payers provided $4,184 per student, which ranks 24th in the United States.
Wayne Lueders, executive director for Associated School Boards of South Dakota, says a lack of state funding creates a number of financial challenges for the state’s school districts.
"Districts are cutting programs, struggling to recruit and retain teachers and are being forced to ask for additional support from local property tax payers," Lueders said. "Our school funding problems all share a common cause – inadequate state funding."
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