K-12 Spending in New Mexico: More Spending for Poor Results

With the Legislature facing a budget deficit during the current legislative session and K-12 education facing at least minor cuts, many in the education establishment are saying that education spending is declining or that the schools have been “cut to the bone.”

Dr. Jose Armas of the Latino/Hispano Education Improvement Task Force recently wrote in the Albuquerque Journal about these supposed cuts saying “Let’s dispel the myth that we’re throwing money at education. New Mexico has been steadily cutting education budgets for decades.”

In an effort to replace empty rhetoric with actual data, we at the Rio Grande Foundation took a close look at the United States Census “Public Education Finances” report which has tracked education spending by state since the 1991-1992 school years. This data clearly shows that per-pupil education spending in New Mexico has risen dramatically over the past two decades. A chart detailing this dramatic rise can be found below. The full report including chart is available here.

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