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Common School Fund

Teacher holding pot with plant in front of five children sitting in the grassOregon’s Common School Fund provides millions of dollars every year to K-12 public schools.

When Oregon was admitted to the Union in 1859, Congress granted our new state nearly 3.4 million acres of land to help fund schools. Approximately 772,600 acres of school lands remain in state ownership today. The State Land Board oversees these school lands and the Common School Fund.
 
As the Land Board’s administrative agency, the Department of State Lands manages school lands, leasing and selling lands to generate revenue for the Fund. Revenue generated by other uses of school lands and Oregon-owned waterways also goes to the Common School Fund, as does interest earned by unclaimed property.
 
The State Treasurer and the Oregon Investment Council invest the Common School Fund. In recent years, fund values have ranged from $600 million to more than $2 billion, depending on market conditions.

Every one of Oregon’s 197 public school districts receives money from the Common School Fund every year, with a maximum annual distribution rate of 3.5 percent of the Fund. Distributions in recent years have ranged from a low of $13 million in 2004 to a high of $72.2 million in 2023. 

2023 Distributions: How Much Did Your District Get?

A record $72.2 million went to Oregon's K-12 public school districts from the Common School Fund in 2023. How much each district receives depends on the number of students served. For example, Portland Public Schools, the state’s largest district, received $6.4 million in 2023. The average 2023 distribution is approximately $367,000.

Past School District Distributions