Per-student funding commitments for the first year of the eRate ranged from a high of $88.92 in Alaska to a low of $7.20 in New Hampshire, an analysis by the eRate consulting firm Funds For Learning (FFL) shows. The average amount committed per child in the 50 states and the District of Columbia was $30.39, while the median was $27.03.
Six other states and the District of Columbia topped $50 or more per child: Kentucky ($70.66), District of Columbia ($64.89), Alabama ($58.68), Georgia ($55.52), New Mexico ($51.69), New York ($51.10), and Oklahoma ($50.00). At the other end of the spectrum, six states received less than $13 per student: Maine ($12.82), Utah ($12.56), Maryland ($12.39), Wyoming ($11.94), Delaware ($7.98), and New Hampshire ($7.20).
FFL used state totals released by the SLD and figures from the National Center for Educational Statistics’ Digest of Education Statistics, 1997 to compute the per-child averages. The NCES figures represented an estimate of each state’s school-age resident population as of July 1, 1996. Resident population figures were used because public, private, and parochial schools all qualify for support, the company said.
The SLD conducted outreach programs in all 50 states, but the level of support provided at the state level varied from one state to another. The numbers only reflect the commitments that were made, not funds that have actually been spent or distributed.