Perhaps the best source of credible, “apples to apples” state funding data is the US Census Bureau’s annual report called Public Education Finances. “Public Education Finances: 2010” was just released, and Table 11 in the report shows that Kentucky’s total current spending on education moved up to 38th place in 2010. We were in 39th place in 2009 according to the same numbered table in “Public Education Finances: 2009.”
What is really interesting, however, is to look at how funding for education has changed in Kentucky since the education reform was passed in 1990. This table shows that story.
As you can see, real spending on education has nearly doubled in Kentucky in the past two decades. In terms of dollars out of your tax-paying wallet, you are now paying 342 percent of what you paid in 1990.
That’s a sizable increase in education ‘bucks’ no matter how you look at it.