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Lotteries for School Funding

Currently, 44 states operate state lotteries, which generate small but not insignificant revenue for these states. Of these 44 states, 23 states earmark the lottery proceeds for the support of education. This entry discusses how much revenue the lotteries raise and the educational activities that states fund with lottery revenues. It goes on to consider why states choose to adopt lotteries, whether lotteries actually increase state spending on education, and what equity issues arise with lotteries for education.


Lotteries have a long history in the United States. In the colonial period, lotteries were a common means of financing public projects, including roads, schools, churches, and public facilities, and lotteries were used during the Revolutionary War and Civil War to supply and support troops. Lotteries continued to ...

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