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Wisconsin Watch partners with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. Read our methodology to learn how we check claims.


In 2021-22, the latest year for which data are available, Wisconsin’s K-12 public school districts received an average of $16,859 in revenue per student, according to the state Department of Public Instruction.

That’s up from $16,017 in 2020-21.

Most of the funds are from state aids and local property taxes.

The nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau provided a breakdown of the 2020-21 figures:

State aid: $7,537 (47.1%)

Local property tax: $6,530 (40.8%)

Federal aid: $1,421 (8.9%)

Other local revenue: $529 (3.3%)

A Republican-authored 2023-25 state budget approved by the Legislature and awaiting action by Democratic Gov. Tony Evers would provide schools an additional $1 billion over the two years.

This Fact Brief is responsive to conversations such as this one.


Google Docs Department of Public Instruction per student revenue

Google Docs Department of Public Instruction per student revenue 2020-21

AP News Wisconsin governor signs bipartisan bill designed to prevent Milwaukee bankruptcy

Wisconsin State Legislature State Aid to School Districts

Wisconsin State Legislature Public instruction

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Tom Kertscher joined as a Wisconsin Watch fact checker in January 2023 and contributes to our collaboration with the The Gigafact Project to fight misinformation online. Kertscher is a former longtime newspaper reporter, including at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, who has worked as a self-employed journalist since 2019. His gigs include contributing writer for PolitiFact and sports freelancer for The Associated Press.