The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) went back to work yesterday, and they released a new study, “Selected Statistics From the Common Core of Data: School Year 2011–12.”
So, did the Republicans’ 2011-13 biennial budget do irreparable harm to public schools? Not according to NCES report.
During the 2011-12 school year, North Carolina had 15.5 pupils per teacher, which was below the national average of 16 pupils per teacher. It was also a typical ratio among states in the South, states with over 70,000 teachers, and states with over one million students. Among Southern states, the notable exception was Virginia, which had 13.8 pupils per teacher.
Although political pundits worry about pupil/teacher ratios, there is no apparent relationship between them and student performance. Washington, DC had about 12 pupils per teacher, for example.