Is the problem with Baltimore’s district schools a lack of funds?
The Daily Show’s Jon Stewart argued as much during a recent interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos:
“If we are spending a trillion dollars to rebuild Afghanistan’s schools, we can’t, you know, put a little taste Baltimore’s way. It’s crazy.”
Let’s forget the off-the-cuff comparison to Afghanistan, however, and focus on a more relevant comparison. Is it true, as Stewart suggests, that Baltimore schools are underfunded relative to other American schools? The National Center for Education Statistics reports the following data on Baltimore City Public Schools and Fairfax County Public Schools, the latter considered among the best school districts in the entire country:
Baltimore schools spend 27% more than Fairfax County schools per student and a majority of the money comes not from the city but from the state and federal government. Thus, when it comes to education spending, Baltimore has not been ignored but is a recipient of significant federal and state aid.