The average age of public schools increased from the 1998–99 school year to the 2012–13 school year, but a lower percentage of schools needed to spend money on repairs, renovations, and modernizations to put them in overall good condition according to a new report.
The National Center for Education Statistics released a new report today (Nov. 15), entitled Changes in America's Public School Facilities: From School Year 1998–99 to School Year 2012–13. The Statistics in Brief compares characteristics of public school facilities in 1998–99 and 2012–13, including the average age of public schools, ratings of satisfaction of the environmental quality of facilities, the cost to put school buildings in good overall condition, and short-range plans for improvements.
Key findings include:
- In the 2012–13 school year, the average functional age of schools' main instructional buildings was 19 years, an increase of 3 years from 1998–99;
- Of all the environmental factors in schools, lighting was the factor rated unsatisfactory by the highest percentage of public schools in 2012–13. In fact, lighting was the only factor where there was an increase in the "unsatisfactory" percentage compared to 1998–99; and
- A lower percentage of public schools in 2012–13 had plans for building improvements in the next two years, compared with 1998–99. About 39 percent of public schools in the 2012–13 school year had plans for major repairs, renovations, or replacements to at least one building feature in the next two years.