What does this measure?
Total spending by school districts in a county, divided by total pupils.
Why is this important?
High spending for schools can mean that better facilities, programs and a greater range of opportunities are available to students. It may also signal public support for education and a more experienced teaching workforce. However, studies have found higher spending does not necessarily lead to higher student achievement, given the many factors that contribute to student success, including parental and community influences.
How is Ulster County performing?
In 2015, school districts in Ulster County spent $24,400 per student, about $1,900 more than the state (excluding NYC) figure. School spending has grown considerably throughout the region and the state since 2000, and Ulster is no exception. Even after adjusting for inflation, per-pupil spending in Ulster is up 59% since 2000, compared to 58% for Dutchess, 53% for Orange, and 44% for the state (excluding NYC). Not only did Ulster have the largest increase during the decade, it consistently had the highest level of per-student spending among counties in the region, and was $2,300 greater than Orange and $2,000 greater than Dutchess in 2015.
School districts in Ulster with the highest per-pupil spending were Onteora ($35,500) and Rondout Valley ($29,500). The lowest spending districts were Saugerties and Wallkill both $21,100 per pupil.
Notes about the data
Figures have been adjusted to 2015 dollars. Data for this indicator are expected to be released in the second quarter.