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Study shows K-12 school spending boosts Oregon’s local economy

K-12 education spending is a major contributor to Oregon’s economy, according to a study released by OSBA, the Oregon Education Association and the Confederation of Oregon School Administrators.

Statewide, more than 100,000 jobs and nearly $4 billion in personal income are directly or indirectly associated with school spending.

“This report makes it clear that money the state spends on its schools is an economic stimulus to Oregon’s local economy,” according to OSBA staff. “Dollars invested in our schools support workers at every level - from waiters to doctors.”

Well-funded schools will help Oregon pull itself out of the economic downturn, he added.

The report shows:

  • With more than 56,000 employees on school district payrolls in 2000-01, the K-12 system ranks as the second largest employer in Oregon.
  • Nine jobs in other sectors of the Oregon economy are supported by every 10 school employees.
  • Rural areas have a larger percent of their total economic activity tied to the K-12 system. In Eastern Oregon, 9.2 percent of regional employment and 12 percent of regional incomes are directly associated with school spending.

The report notes specific economic impacts in Oregon’s five geographic regions. For example: About 7.8 percent of the total employment in Southern Oregon is directly or indirectly affected by school spending. In Eastern Oregon, about 6,500 jobs and $200 million in personal income are supported by school spending.

ECONorthwest, a Portland firm specializing in economics and finance, was commissioned to do the study

2002-2003 Impact Tables (59k This file is in Adobe Acrobat PDF format. Click here to download. ) - This set of tables gives the total economic impact of both Special Session K-12 budget reductions. Losses are given by county and school district.

How school funding works

OSBA 2015 Legislative Policies and Priorities