The total per pupil school revenue in Minnesota, when adjusted for inflation, will finally recover from its low point in 2012 in the next fiscal year. After 16 years, total revenue per pupil will exceed the 2003 revenue by 1.9 percent or $221 per pupil by FY 2019, according to a new report released today by the Northstar Institute.

The recovery is about evenly split between an increase in local levies and state aid.

  • Local  levies are up statewide on average of $1,199 or 122 percent from 2003.
  • State aid increased $1,012 per pupil between 2012 and 2019 and is roughly half the $1,990 loss in per pupil funding which occurred between 2004 and 2012.

These trends are documented and pictured by the Northstar Institute in an analysis and report released  last week.  Author Jeff VanWychen in his analysis provides historical information and describes the number of districts and students affected by these general trends.

The increase in the statewide average of local levies can be seen in the chart below. In FY 2019, 18 percent of total revenue comes from local levies , up from 8 percent of total revenue in 2003.

Each of Minnesota’s 332 school districts has its own 16-year revenue history.  Local levies are based on voters and/or board approval.

State aid can vary by district based on many different factors, including funding for special education, career technical, integration aid, alternative facilities, deferred maintenance, telecommunications, operative capital, compensatory, and third grade literacy.

The Northstar Institute’s School Revenue Trends Report (FY 2003-2019) details information on each of Minnesota’s school districts with two charts for each district like the charts on the statewide average trends.

School leaders are free to use these charts and information as long as they credit the Northstar Institute.  PDF Professional or the free Snipping Tool will allow you to extract the charts and information for your district to share with your public.  Should you want MREA to do that for you, send your request to

View article on key findings. 

View full report.

MREA thanks the Northstar Institute and author Jeff VanWychen for this important and informative analysis and report.

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