National report on school buildings reports $46 billion annual funding shortfall

Millions of students said to be learning in obsolete facilities.

March 28, 2016 |
National report on school buildings reports $46 billion annual funding shortfall

Photo: Pasco County Schools/Creative Commons.

The nation faces a projected annual shortfall of $46 billion in school funding, according to The State of Our Schools: America’s K-12 Facilities report, by the Center for Green Schools at the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), the 21st Century School Fund, and the National Council on School Facilities.

The report features in-depth state-by-state analysis of investment in school infrastructure and a perspective on 20 years of school facility investment nationwide. It also makes recommendations for investments, innovations, and reforms to improve learning environments in all U.S. public schools. 

“One out of every six people in the U.S. spends each day in a K-12 public school classroom, yet there is very little oversight over America’s public school buildings,” said Rick Fedrizzi, CEO and founding chair, USGBC. “It is totally unacceptable that there are millions of students across the country who are learning in dilapidated, obsolete and unhealthy facilities that pose obstacles to their learning and overall well-being. U.S. public school infrastructure is funded through a system that is inequitably affecting our nation’s students and this has to change.”

“The data on funding school infrastructure paints a clear picture of the importance of a national conversation regarding the way improvements are funded,” said Mike Rowland, president, National Council on School Facilities and director of Facilities Services for the Georgia Department of Education. “The conversation surrounding student achievement must also include a component addressing the places where our children learn.” 

To download the full State of Our Schools: America’s K-12 Facilities report, and to find out the conditions in your local school district, visit here.

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