Back to school by the numbers
September 4th, 2012
04:10 AM ET

Back to school by the numbers

By Amy Roberts and Caitlin Stark, CNN Library

(CNN) - It’s back to school time. Starting dates around the U.S. vary by state and district: Some schools started on different dates in August, while others start this week.  As we embark on the 2012-2013 academic year, here’s a numerical snapshot of education in the U.S.

Grades K-12

54.7 million – Number of students enrolled in elementary and secondary schools, both public and private, in the U.S. in 2011.

3.7 million – Elementary and secondary school teachers working in U.S. schools in 2011.

$11,467 – The estimated average amount a typical public school will spend on each student in 2012-2013.

31.8 million – Number of children who received free or reduced price lunches through the National School Lunch Program in 2011.

3.4 million – Students expected to graduate from high school in the 2012-2013 school year.

11.8 milllion – Number of students who spoke a language other than English at home in 2010.

2.04 million – Number of homeschooled students in 2010.

$83.8 billion – Estimated amount to be spent on back-to-school shopping in the U.S. in 2012.

$688 – Average amount parents will spend on back-to-school items for kids in grades K-12.


21.6 million – Number of students expected to be enrolled in colleges and universities in fall 2012.

12.3 million – Number of female students expected to be enrolled in colleges and universities in fall 2012.

16 – Percent of college students age 35 and older in 2010.

$20,100 – Total annual cost of attending a public college/university in 2010, paying in-state tuition.

$39,800 – Total annual cost of attending a private college/university in 2010.

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Filed under: At Home • College • Economy • Elementary school • High school • Middle school • Practice • School lunch
soundoff (2 Responses)
  1. Paul

    Interesting that 60 percent of students need subsidized lunches.

    September 12, 2012 at 7:48 pm |
  2. Barbra & Jack Donachy

    Nicely done.

    September 5, 2012 at 1:04 am |