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Visualization: district spending adequacy profiles

This tool allows users to display and visualize K-12 spending adequacy for over 12,000 individual U.S. school districts in each year between 2009 and 2020 (estimates updated annually on a 2-3 year lag due to federal finance data release schedule). Choose a district by selecting a state, district, and year, and then pressing the “apply” button. The visualization is separated into four tabs (click on a tab in the visualization to display):

  1. Spending adequacy: compare actual spending per-pupil in the selected district/year with the spending level required (i.e., adequate) to achieve national average test scores. 
  2. Adequacy/outcomes: compare adequacy with the average testing outcomes in the selected district/year. 
  3. Trends: examine the trend in the selected district’s funding adequacy (expressed in $ gaps) between 2009-20.
  4. Characteristics: display contextual district data, including Census poverty and student race/ethnicity.

All of the data in the visualization are from our District Cost Database (DCD). For more information about these measures, see the DCD user’s guide or check out this research brief. You can also download the full dataset

Note: if you get an “unexpected error” message when attempting to load the Tableau visualization, try enabling third party cookies in your web browser.

Latest News


April 2023: You can download the full DCD dataset with adequacy estimates for over 12,000 districts between 2009-2020 or look up individual districts with our data visualization tool.

Latest Annual Report

The Adequacy and Fairness of State School Finance Systems (fifth edition)

The fifth edition of our annual report presenting findings on effort, statewide adequacy, and equal opportunity in state school finance systems. Published December 2022.

Latest Research Briefs

The Source Code: Revenue Composition and the Adequacy, Equity, and Stability of K-12 School Spending

An analysis of the relationship between revenue composition and the adequacy, equity, and stability of K-12 funding. Published April 2023. Read the report.