A different world
The latest figures (not adjusted to 2002 real dollars like the numbers above): median per-pupil spending of $10,173 in FY2006.
I've shown the chart before, but it's worth re-posting to make the point that in all likelihood, the days of large annual increases in per-pupil funding have come to and end. We've all seen what's happening to school funding in the short term due to lower tax revenues (particularly property taxes) and higher costs for fuel, food, and healthcare.
Given that, it continues to surprise me that those in the education industry haven't been more vocal about community/school partnerships. There's certainly been a great cry for increased funding, and the folks in the education foundation world have been asked to greatly increase their efforts. But where's the cry for a collaborative approach to tackling the problem? There's a great opportunity for relieving the resource pressures placed on schools, and great potential for improved outcomes.
So when do we admit we're in a different world and respond accordingly?