North Carolina Per Pupil Expenditures (PPE)

Beginning in 2019-20, the federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) requires all states to report school-level per pupil expenditures, by funding source. The availability of school-level data provides a new level of transparency for the public, educators, and policymakers and has the potential to uncover spending trends that have been masked by district-level data. BEST NC has created an interactive tool to help facilitate learning and exploration around these new per pupil expenditure data from 2018-19 through 2020-21.

The Per Pupil Expenditure Interactive Data Explorer

This data explorer allows users to identify relationships between per pupil expenditures and other school-level data. More information on how to use the data explorer can be found below.

Understanding and Using the PPE Interactive Tool:

On the home screen of the tool above (you may need to click the “Back to Home” button to navigate there), there are several arrows that explain how to use the tool. Please note that student performance metrics are unavailable for the 2019-20 school year, as all end-of-year tests were canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, in 2020-21, students took end-of-year tests, but North Carolina was granted a waiver from federal accountability requirements, meaning that student proficiency numbers are available, but other school-level metrics – such as School Performance Scores, School Achievement Scores, and School Growth Scores – are not.  These academic data will be available for the 2021-22 school year, but the per pupil expenditure data will lag until sometime in 2023.

Note: A small subset of schools have been excluded from this data set as expenditure outliers. If you are looking for a specific school and cannot find it here, please visit the NC School Report Card page for more information. Email us at if you have any questions.

Breaking Down the Data:

Using school level expenditure data, we are able to provide more detailed analysis of North Carolina’s per pupil expenditures by school types.

Additional Resources: