Letter writer’s per-pupil spending number for the Clark County School District doesn’t add up

I just finished reading Stanley Cohen’s Sunday letter to the editor on education spending and immediately thought that it didn’t sound right. He cites some source that Clark County spends $8,023 per pupil annually. It’s the fifth-largest district in the country, with an enrollment of more than 300,000.

Off the top of my head, I can calculate that 300,000 times $8,000 is $2.4 billion. A quick online search of the Clark County School District’s website shows its planned expenditures for the current school year are about $5.2 billion. What happened to the missing $2.8 billion?

By my calculations, $5.2 billion divided by 300,000 is $17,333 per student annually, which is consistent with New York and New Jersey, states praised by Mr. Cohen.

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