By U.S. News | Lauren Camera | Nov. 5, 2021
In a major blow that left educators, school leaders and advocates stunned, Democrats pared back – and then eliminated – $100 billion that Joe Biden earmarked for school modernization in his spending bill.
“The 2021 State of Our School report – the most recent analysis of the country’s public school facilities – found that the U.S. is underinvesting in school buildings and grounds by $85 billion each year, up an inflation-adjusted $25 billion a year since 2016.
And unlike highways, roads and bridges, which have most of their capital costs paid by federal and state sources, local school districts bear the heaviest responsibilities for school construction costs. Local districts paid 77% percent of the costs for capital projects from 2009 to 2019 – though the share is highly variable by state, with 11 states paying nothing and eight covering more than 50% of district costs.
The federal government contributes just 1%, or $7 billion, to school infrastructure costs, almost all of which goes toward rebuilding in the wake of natural disasters.”