Georgia lawmakers have drastically cut per-student state funding for education not just in the past few years of economic decline, but for the past decade, according to a new analysis by the Georgia Budget and Policy Institute.
The state has cut funding to the University System of Georgia by 19.8 percent since 2009, and slashed spending on the state technical college system by 11 percent in the same time period, according to the Atlanta-based think tank. During the same period, the state has cut spending on K-12 public education by 12.5 percent, and slashed prekindergarten spending by 11.4 percent, according to reports by GBPI analyst Cedric Johnson.
But the GBPI analysis notes that, when inflation and enrollment increases are taken into consideration, state spending on both K-12 and higher education has been on the decline since 2001.
“Serving more with less is not a recent phenomenon resulting from the Great Recession, but rather an ongoing, decade-long trend,” Johnson wrote.