Education by the numbers in Columbia, South Carolina

Photo by ThisIsEngineering from Pexels

One thing doesn’t changeeducation is always a hot topic in South Carolina. The sentiment shared amongst most is that teachers don’t get paid enough for all that they do. We count on educators to mold the future generation with the skills they need for tomorrow. 

Have you ever wondered how much it costs to teach South Carolina students these important tools? There is a helpful dashboard for that, thanks to Palmetto Promise. Today, we are breaking down the numbers of what a public education (K-12) costs in South Carolina. 

💰How much do we spend?

Education spending represents approx. 40% of South Carolina’s general fund. State K-12 education spending, which comes from the Department of Education, totaled $4.8 billion in 2019-2020. This is the first time the budget reached this amount in state history. Add in local + federal spending to this sum and the annual education budget climbs to $10.4 billion (not including coronavirus federal emergency funds).  

💰Where does the money go? 

This one-of-a-kind dashboard compares data for each district, including per student revenue, percent spent on instruction, graduation rate, college readiness, and average teacher salary. 

Let’s take a closer look and make cents of these numbers.

Education stats for South Carolina | Image via Palmetto Promise Dashboard 

South Carolina public education by the numbers for 2020-2021:

758,752 Number of students in South Carolina 

52,733 Number of teachers in South Carolina 

81 – Number of public school districts

683 – Number of primary schools 

335 Number of middle schools 

248 Number of high schools

 

81% – State  graduation rate 

49.7% – State average for SC Ready 3rd grade English Language Arts 

36.6% – State average for SC Ready 8th grade Math 

41.7% – State average for college readiness 

72.5% – State average for career readiness

 

$14,801 – State average revenue per student 

$9,497 – State average public school spending per student 

$49,737 State average teacher salary 

 

Wondering what these numbers look like in your district? Let’s dig into the local data. 

Richland School District One by the numbers | Image via Palmetto Promise Dashboard 

21,660 Total number of students in Richland One 

1,949 – Total number of teachers in Richland One 

30 – Total number of primary schools 

10 Total number of middle schools 

9 Total number of high schools

 

82% – Average for graduation rate 

41.5% – Average for SC Ready 3rd grade English Language Arts 

25% – Average for SC Ready 8th grade Math 

30% – Average for college readiness 

66.3% – Average for career readiness

 

$21,160 – Average revenue per student 

$15,009 – Average public school spending per student 

$52,537 Average teacher salary 

51.7% – Average spent on instruction 

Richland School District Two by the numbers | Image via Palmetto Promise Dashboard 

27,540 Total number of students in Richland Two 

1,949 – Total number of teachers in Richland Two 

23 – Total number of primary schools 

7 Total number of middle schools 

6 Total number of high schools

 

87% – Average for graduation rate 

51.1% – Average for SC Ready 3rd grade English Language Arts 

39.9% – Average for SC Ready 8th grade Math 

42.4% – Average for college readiness 

80.8% – Average for career readiness

 

$16,098 – Average revenue per student 

$11,045 – Average public school spending per student 

$52,149 Average teacher salary 

54.4% – Average spent on instruction 

Lexington School District One by the numbers | Image via Palmetto Promise Dashboard 

26,947 Total number of students in Lexington One 

1,923 – Total number of teachers in Lexington One 

16 – Total number of primary schools 

7 Total number of middle schools 

5 Total number of high schools

 

90% – Average for graduation rate 

60.1% – Average for SC Ready 3rd grade English Language Arts 

40.2% – Average for SC Ready 8th grade Math 

53.4% – Average for college readiness 

84.1% – Average for career readiness

 

$15,136 – Average revenue per student 

$11,040 – Average public school spending per student 

$52,689 Average teacher salary 

56.9% – Average spent on instruction 

Lexington School District Two by the numbers | Image via Palmetto Promise Dashboard 

8,650 Total number of students in Lexington Two 

629 – Total number of teachers in Lexington Two

6 – Total number of primary schools 

4 Total number of middle schools 

2 Total number of high schools

 

76% – Average for graduation rate 

37.3% – Average for SC Ready 3rd grade English Language Arts 

29.7% -– Average for SC Ready 8th grade Math 

33.7% – Average for college readiness 

63% – Average for career readiness

 

$16,061 – Average revenue per student 

$10,626 – Average public school spending per student 

$49,037 Average teacher salary 

53.8% – Average spent on instruction 

Lexington School District Three by the numbers | Image via Palmetto Promise Dashboard 

1,988 Total number of students in Lexington Three 

147 – Total number of teachers in Lexington Three

1 – Total number of primary schools 

1 Total number of middle schools 

1 Total number of high schools

 

84% – Average for graduation rate 

37.7% – Average for SC Ready 3rd grade English Language Arts 

22.8% – Average for SC Ready 8th grade Math 

31.3% – Average for college readiness 

74.2% – Average for career readiness

 

$17,677 – Average revenue per student 

$12,798 – Average public school spending per student 

$48,839 Average teacher salary 

49.6% – Average spent on instruction 

Lexington School District Four by the numbers | Image via Palmetto Promise Dashboard 

3,103 Total number of students in Lexington Four 

222 – Total number of teachers in Lexington Four

2 – Total number of primary schools 

1 Total number of middle schools 

1 Total number of high schools

 

80% – Average for graduation rate 

27.4% – Average for SC Ready 3rd grade English Language Arts 

9.3% – Average for SC Ready 8th grade Math 

16.1% – Average for college readiness 

50.5% – Average for career readiness

 

$15,168 – Average revenue per student 

$10,160 – Average public school spending per student 

$46,340 Average teacher salary 

51.7% – Average spent on instruction 

Lexington-Richland School District Five by the numbers | Image via Palmetto Promise Dashboard 

17,009 Total number of students in Lexington-Richland Five 

1,306 – Total number of teachers in Lexington-Richland Five

13 – Total number of primary schools 

4 Total number of middle schools 

4 Total number of high schools

 

88% – Average for graduation rate 

60.2% – Average for SC Ready 3rd grade English Language Arts 

50.4% – Average for SC Ready 8th grade Math 

60.4% – Average for college readiness 

81.8% – Average for career readiness

 

$15,737 – Average revenue per student 

$12,177 – Average public school spending per student 

$54,160 Average teacher salary 

55.1% – Average spent on instruction