Financial reporting under ESSA
The federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) has a per-pupil expenditure (PPE) reporting requirement, as follows: “Each State report card… shall include the following:… the per-pupil expenditures of Federal, State, and local funds, including actual personnel expenditures and actual non-personnel expenditures of Federal, State, and local funds, disaggregated by source of funds, for each local educational agency and each school in the State…" [ESEA Sec. 1111(h)(1)C)(x)]
The Hawaii DOE began reporting the PPE on a statewide basis and for individual school beginning in 2019, using fiscal year 2017-18 data. On an annual basis, the Department will update these reports and post them to our ESSA dashboard site. To learn more about how PPE is calculated at these various levels, and to understand the factors that drive variances between schools, please review:
How does Hawaii’s educational spending compare nationally?
The funding of public schools is typically expressed “per pupil” — how much school districts are taking in and spending divided by the number of students served. It is helpful to look at Hawaii's spending relative to other states and the District of Columbia. Here are some key findings of the U.S. Census Bureau’s annual survey reflecting Fiscal Year 2017 data, released April 2019 (figures pulled from Summary Tables 11 and 12). All rankings are based on the 50 states and the District of Columbia:
FY 2018 PER-PUPIL SPENDING: $15,242. The national average is $12,612.
REVENUES — Hawaii is:
UNDERSTANDING PER-PUPIL FUNDING
SPENDING — Hawaii is:
16th in the nation for per-pupil revenue, down from 12th in the nation the year prior. Hawaii has one of the highest costs of living in the country, yet its school system receives less than 15 other states.
39th in the nation for revenue per $1,000 of personal income in the state, down from 25th in the nation the year prior. Hawaii's public schools are given $39.15 for every $1,000 of income earned in the state. Thirty-eight other states spend a larger fraction of personal income on public schools. The U.S. average is $43.07. The highest is Alaska at $60.41.
14th highest in the nation for per-pupil spending. We are:
- 15th in the nation for spending on instruction at $8,373 per pupil (U.S. average is $7,406).
- 51st in the nation (lowest) for spending on general administration at $72 per pupil (U.S. average is $230).
- 5th in the nation for spending on school administration at $1,029 (U.S. average is $674).
This nationally reported per-pupil funding includes monies from EDNs 100-400, and includes all means of finance: state, federal, special and trust. It also includes fringe benefits for general-funded employees that are not appropriated in the Department’s EDNs — since they are budgeted centrally at the Department of Budget and Finance for all general-funded employees. This is important to understand because it creates an appearance of a substantial difference between the amount of per-pupil funding given to the Department and that given to the state’s public charter schools. The state's per pupil funding formula, contained in statute §302D-28, is based on the DOE's EDN 100, 200, 300, and 400 general fund budget. By that base calculation, for FY 2017-18, per-pupil funding for the Department and charter schools was $7,359, and is adjusted each year to align with funding levels for the Department.