Wyoming ranks twenty-third in the nation in student performance and progress. That’s according to the American Legislative Exchange Council’s 2011 annual Report Card on American Education. While the score rose from twenty-eighth place in 2010, the report accuses Wyoming of misspending a financial windfall—spending a great deal of money with little to show for it.
Report co-author Matthew Ladner says that we all have a huge stake in the success of the public education system, and the goal should be improved student performance. "Obviously you guys have had a large oil and gas boom and spending has gone up quite a bit in Wyoming," says Ladner. "So the key is to make sure you’re getting the most bang for buck that you can out of the system."
The report notes that Wyoming spent $17,000 per student last year while ranking near the bottom in its ability to improve achievement of low-income children.