MPG Posted: May 6, 2007 11:29 PM >And your characterization of the "whole rest of the >country" has no statistical legs whatsoever.
There may be a number of new correspondents to math-teach. Those of you who do not use the web interface, you may like to try it as an easy and efficient way of accessing the archives. Go to http://mathforum.org Along the top you will see a series of tabs; click on "Math Talk" From there, click on "Math Teach"
Once in math-teach, you will see a long list of discussion "threads". Please find, "Re: MPG: Vast Underfunding" http://mathforum.org/kb/thread.jspa?threadID=1394506&tstart=0 This thread is unusual, and therefore easy to find, because it will show up near the top of the list of threads (the list is a stack showing at the top those discussions with the most recent contributions), it started almost a year ago, and it has an unusually high number of contributions (approximately 178).
Among my earlier contributions, I present statistics from
- the U.S. Department of Education, - New York city budget (and later, other cities), - analyses by economists, - tables of international comparisons of education spending among the industrialized countries, and - at least one fascinating case study, Kansas City, MO.
Furthermore, this thread is liberally sprinkled with newspaper articles discussing municipal expenditures on schools, teacher salaries, and episodes of staggering financial fraud and waste.
In sum, there exists a very large body of facts about education spending in the U.S., including average teacher salaries by geographical regions. No matter how you slice and dice the data, the outcome is always the same. To wit, the U.S. is now, and has been for several decades, spending a very large, and rapidly growing portion of its social wealth on schools. Among all industrialized countries, we are #1 or #2 in per capita spending on education. (Our standing can oscillate slightly over time and whether we are looking at elementary school spending or high school spending, but we are always at the top of the league tables.)
God knows, there is plenty that is debatable about our public schools. We can certainly debate whether we spend our money wisely or efficiently. But what can no longer be debated with any intellectual integrity is the evident fact that we, as a society, spend a stupendous amount of money on our schools (currently in the neighborhood of $500 Billion a year). Whatever else is going on with them, "vast underfunding" is not it.
In response to this mountain of hard data (which is freely available to anyone who cares to look it up), of which I have presented a mere few stones and some gravel, Mr. Goldenberg describes a world that exists nowhere outside his own head, liberally garnished with personal insults.