I found this graph at the US Dept of Education:
We seem not to have really gotten much in return. Except demands for more. And in that regard, an article from Politifact goes through a lot of hand-waving and some magic incantations (“adjusted for inflation”) and still arrives at the conclusion: Mostly True.
A stunning report, The Phony Funding Crisis. From the introductory paragraph:
Chicken Little is alive and seemingly employed as a finance analyst or reporter for an education interest group. If one relies on newspaper headlines for education funding information, one might conclude that America’s schools suffer from a perpetual fiscal crisis, every year perched precariously on the brink of financial ruin, never knowing whether there will be sufficient funding to continue operating
And in response to one of the comments:
The civility of the McCord and Ellerson rejoinder is appreciated. Moreover, their self-reports of school-district financial shortfalls are no doubt heartfelt.
However, the 30,000-foot perspective for which we are impugned is the more accurate view. We report objectively derived federal government–calculated national averages over a century. The long-run overall pattern is crystal clear: America has supported its public schools plentifully for a century. Nothing McCord and Ellerson say refutes this.
By crying fiscal wolf year after year, in the face of contrary data, public school advocates deceive taxpayers and avoid the four-decade reality of stagnant student performance and woeful mismanagement in places such as Detroit.