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California school spending among lowest in the nation

Budget shortfalls have pushed California’s spending on public schools to a historic low, relative to the rest of the United States, according to a new analysis by the California Budget Project, reports California Watch. California ranks 46th in the U.S. in K-12 spending per student. It spent $2,856 less per student in 2010-11 than did the rest of the nation – a spending gap that is four times wider than it was a decade earlier, when the state lagged behind by $691 per student. While it’s debatable whether more spending means better schools, it’s clear that sharp declines in California’s general fund revenue, particularly since the 2007-08 fiscal year, have left schools strapped for resources, said Jonathan Kaplan, senior policy analyst at the project and author of the report [PDF]

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