Study: White students receive over $2k more in school funding nationwide than non-white students
According to NPR, schools that are predominantly white receive $23 billion more than schools that are predominantly nonwhite nationwide. This figure comes via a new report from non-profit organization EdBuild, which studies how schools are funded in America. The report states that “for every student enrolled, the average nonwhite school district receives $2,226 less than a white school district.”
The study cites 21 states, including California, New Jersey and New York, where students in mostly white districts receive more funding than districts that are predominantly nonwhite. Over half of the students in America go to schools which are “racially concentrated,” which the report uses to describe schools where more than 75% of the population is either white or non-white.
In America, school funding generally relies heavily on property taxes, and because of redlining and segregation, white neighborhoods usually have higher property values. Majority non-white schools, which are also often high-poverty districts, receive around $1,600 less than the national average. But majority white districts that are also high-poverty districts only receive about $130 less than the national average.
Rebecca Sibila, founder and CEO of EdBuild, told NPR, “We have built a school funding system that is reliant on geography, and therefore the school funding system has inherited all of the historical ills of where we have forced and incentivized people to live.”
In the South, however, where school funding is often drawn along county lines resulting in larger districts, funding looks more equal. According to Sibilia, “This confirms a theory that we’ve had, which is that the larger the tax base—the larger the actual geography of the school district—the more you can actually balance out the difference between a wealthy white suburb and a less wealthy rural or urban area.”