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slides: Report: Hidden Cost For RI Schools Tops $2,500 Per Pupil

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

 

Rhode Island spends an average of nearly $2,800 per student for school employee benefits, according to data released by the Rhode Island Department of Education.  

The report, which covers data for the 2010-11 school year and was issued by InfoWorks!, reflects the total per pupil expenditure amount for both current employee medical benefits as well as retiree benefits, and includes other benefits such as life insurance, tuition reimbursement, uniform allowance, and other miscellaneous items.

In total, 52 Local Education Agencies (LEAs), which encompass school districts as well as public charter schools, were listed in the rankings.

Topping the list was Newport at $5,248 per pupil, followed by Davies, Jamestown, Johnston, Central Falls, Narragansett, South Kingstown, and Bristol-Warren. Providence ranked ninth at $3,255.

To check your local expenditures and compare them to other communities in Rhode island, use the interactive tool, here. 

Rhode Island Department of Education spokesperson Elliot Krieger refered to the release of data along these lines as part of RIDE's strategic plan for transforming education in Rhode Island. "We are committed to investing our resources wisely to improve learning and achievement," he said. "We encourage all communities to look at and use these reports and other data in the Uniform Chart of Accounts for guidance and information about revenue and expenditures."

During the same time period, the total per pupil expenditure per LEA, which does not include the employee benefits, totalled $15,172 per student, which means that the average employee benefit liability per LEA equated to nearly 20% of per-pupil spending. However, this figure varied widely among communities.

What does the extra spending achieve? 

"This data shows high per pupil expenditures do not necessarily translate into the highest performing school districts," said Donna Perry, Executive Director of the Rhode Island Statewide Coalition. "It's notable that the largest city school systems, including Providence and Warwick, have among the highest per pupil expenditures for staff compensation and benefits, yet other suburban districts with lower per pupil costs far outpace them in overall student rankings."

"Successful student outcomes and high staff compensation levels, as measured by per pupil expenditures in this state, do not go hand in hand," Perry said. 

Perry said that taxpayers in several of the state's financially strapped communities, including West Warwick, Central Falls, and Woonsocket, "should be very concerned to see their communities with among the highest levels of per pupil costs while continuing to show a real struggle in student performance and rankings."

"Considering the state is mired in a very divisive debate right now about high school diploma requirements, it's timely to examine which communities are turning out successful students -- and how they got there," she said. 

To see the Top 20 highest school employee benefit budgets, see the slides, here. 

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#20 Tiverton

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $2,656

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 18.07%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $14,695

  • Instruction: $7,981
  • Instructional Support: $2,144
  • Operations: $2,295
  • Leadership: $1,420
  • Other Commitments: $857
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#19 Foster

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $2,662

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 16.61%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $16,018

  • Instruction: $9,832
  • Instructional Support: $1,326
  • Operations: $3,347
  • Leadership: $483
  • Other Commitments: $1,031
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#18 North Kingstown

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $2,674

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 18.90%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $14,148

  • Instruction: $7,971
  • Instructional Support: $2,218
  • Operations: $2,459
  • Leadership: $1,035
  • Other Commitments: $721
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#17 Cranston

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $2,688

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 19.38%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $13,864

  • Instruction: $7,989
  • Instructional Support: $2,017
  • Operations: $1,995
  • Leadership: $1,172
  • Other Commitments: $691
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#16 Highlander

Providence

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $2,765

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 15.22%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $18,162

  • Instruction: $9,797
  • Instructional Support: $3,927
  • Operations: $2,696
  • Leadership: $30
  • Other Commitments: $1,712
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#15 Little Compton

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $2,861

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 13.44%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $21,272

  • Instruction: $10,122
  • Instructional Support: $3,007
  • Operations: $3,652
  • Leadership: $3,291
  • Other Commitments: $1,199
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#14 Westerly

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $2,896

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 17.44%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $16,604

  • Instruction: $8,953
  • Instructional Support: $2,779
  • Operations: $2,930
  • Leadership: $990
  • Other Commitments: $852
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#13 Glocester

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $2,921

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 18.42%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $15,852

  • Instruction: $9,584
  • Instructional Support: $1,940
  • Operations: $2,959
  • Leadership: $463
  • Other Commitments: $907
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#12 West Warwick

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $2,977

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 19.91%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $14,946

  • Instruction: $8,425
  • Instructional Support: $2,176
  • Operations: $2,025
  • Leadership: $1,505
  • Other Commitments: $815
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#11 Exeter-W. Greenwich

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $3,099

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 17.31%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $17,377

  • Instruction: $9,811
  • Instructional Support: $2,234
  • Operations: $2,507
  • Leadership: $1,739
  • Other Commitments: $1,086
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#10 Warwick

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $3,178

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 18.67%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $17,015

  • Instruction: $9,537
  • Instructional Support: $3,232
  • Operations: $2,392
  • Leadership: $897
  • Other Commitments: $957
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#9 Providence

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $3,255

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 19.35%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $16,818

  • Instruction: $8,541
  • Instructional Support: $2,955
  • Operations: $3,140
  • Leadership: $1,402
  • Other Commitments: $780
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#8 Bristol-Warren

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $3,277

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 21.94%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $14,936

  • Instruction: $7,859
  • Instructional Support: $2,003
  • Operations: $2,202
  • Leadership: $2,097
  • Other Commitments: $775
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#7 South Kingstown

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $3,358

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 19.16%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $17,519

  • Instruction: $9,815
  • Instructional Support: $2,749
  • Operations: $2,630
  • Leadership: $1,261
  • Other Commitments: $1,064
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#6 Narragansett

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $3,366

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 18.10%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $18,595

  • Instruction: $10,173
  • Instructional Support: $3,075
  • Operations: $2,781
  • Leadership: $1,370
  • Other Commitments: $1,195
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#5 Central Falls

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $3,445

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 20.15%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $20,265

  • Instruction: $10,979
  • Instructional Support: $4,667
  • Operations: $2,316
  • Leadership: $1,259
  • Other Commitments: $1,044
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#4 Johnston

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $3,687

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 14.88%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $17,093

  • Instruction: $8,501
  • Instructional Support: $2,309
  • Operations: $2,479
  • Leadership: $2,943
  • Other Commitments: $861
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#3 Jamestown

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $3,762

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 21.57%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $25,266

  • Instruction: $11,254
  • Instructional Support: $2,569
  • Operations: $2,856
  • Leadership: $7,275
  • Other Commitments: $1,312
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#2 Davies

Lincoln

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $4,553

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 22.91%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $19,873

  • Instruction: $10,874
  • Instructional Support: $4,310
  • Operations: $3,288
  • Leadership: $695
  • Other Commitments: $705
Prev Next

#1 Newport

All Employee Benefits, Current and Retired, Per Pupil (2010-11): $5,248

Employee Benefits as Percentage of Per Pupil Expenditure: 25.95%

Total (Per Pupil Expenditure): $20,221

  • Instruction: $10,535
  • Instructional Support: $2,427
  • Operations: $2,689
  • Leadership: $3,476
  • Other Commitments: $1,094
 
 

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Comments:

John Ward

I'm glad to see that this is one of the ways Woonsocket is underfunding it's education department!

John Ward

Perry said that taxpayers in several of the state's financially strapped communities, including West Warwick, Central Falls, and Woonsocket, "should be very concerned to see their communities with among the highest levels of per pupil costs while continuing to show a real struggle in student performance and rankings."

Donna, don't count Federal dollars as part of per pupil spending. That is money specifically targeted for extra services, not basic education. Compare state and local money only and see what a big difference it makes in the rankings.

Jenn Palumbo

We have the unions to thank for this. Time for their corrupt backsides to hit the road! Time for teachers to be paid based on merit. Sick of hearing my kids come home and tell me all they did was watch movies all day. WTH? Since January I have read FIVE police reports about teachers doing harm to a child. That is a lot for a tiny state like this. One of them was a Providence teacher where the average salary for them is $70-80,000 a year.

michael riley

This new report below suggests the problem revealed above may be understated.

Revealing What States Are Hiding


http://blog.heritage.org/2013/03/26/states-hide-teachers-pensions/?roi=echo3-15012329390-11990012-c802805a69f6b6ebee12742a749d000a&utm_source=Newsletter&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=Morning+Bell

Malachi Constant

Hey wait a minute....don't you right wingers normally say wages and benefits add up to 70 or 80%...now its down to 18%

can you please get your story straight?

Patrick Boyd

They're spending over $20,000 per pupil in Central Falls!?!?!?!

Also do I understand this correctly? The teachers are given a "uniform allowance"? The report, which covers data for the 2010-11 school year and was issued by InfoWorks!, reflects the total per pupil expenditure amount for both current employee medical benefits as well as retiree benefits, and includes other benefits such as life insurance, tuition reimbursement, uniform allowance, and other miscellaneous items."
Really???




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