News Home
Quick Bites
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
On AirNewsClassical
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

Hennes Paynter Communications


Hospice of the Western Reserve

For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )

Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us

Productivity study suggests Ohio schools could get more bang for their buck
Urban and affluent school districts both are among the least productive, get less value relative to the money they spend
Story by BILL RICE

In The Region:
Ohio’s urban school districts are among the least productive when it comes to how they spend their money, according to a report released last week by the left-leaning Center for American Progress. StateImpact Ohio’s Bill Rice has the story.
Productivity study suggests Ohio schools could get more bang for their buck

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (1:28)

The group’s report creates a productivity index for about 7,000 school districts in 40 states by measuring their student achievement scores against per-pupil expenditures. The idea is to rate the return on investment of each school district within a state, adjusting for differences in things like average income, cost-of-living, special needs, and language barriers that would throw off comparisons.

The report includes an interactive tool that allows users to call up a specific state and compare productivity between districts. In other words, the focus is not on how much money is spent per student from district to district, but rather on which districts get the biggest “bang for the buck.”

“In education, we don’t talk nearly enough about productivity,” says Ulrich Boser, the study’s author.

“What we see happening in a lot of schools and districts is on one side of the room folks are talking about student achievement and what they can do to improve outcomes, and on the other side people are talking about financing schools, [whether they’re] equitably funded, where they’re getting their dollars from. And much more needs to be done to focus on productivity.”

The metric for Ohio shows wide disparities, with most of the state’s urban districts getting the least return on investment. 
But some other more affluent districts are also shown to be getting less value relative to the money they spend.

Boser concedes the study provides only a rudimentary evaluation of districts’ productivity, and even that some of its assumptions are debatable. He says states themselves could do a much more thorough analysis, but very few are doing it.

“Ohio, for instance, does not do any productivity rating of its schools itself, does not offer any tools that are directly related to giving district leaders, empowering them with capacity, with training to build productivity. And that data is out there,” he says.

“We wanted to put something together that would start this conversation.”

Because of the large differences in the types and amounts of data available from state to state, the study does not compare or rank states as a whole for productivity.
Add Your Comment


E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook

Stories with Recent Comments

New options in Ohio for secular wedding ceremonies
Hello Mike, I support this action. I was not previously aware of the difficulty couples may encounter in locating officials to serve in their non-religious mar...

Northeast Ohio prepares for the next refugees -- whoever they may be
What a better place to place refugees than in the Midwest cities that have a steady population decline. These refugees will bring much to the culture and the ec...

Charter reform bill includes controversial change for some teachers
I work for a former White Hat charter school; it was sold to another (for-profit) company this past summer and we were told that they would not pay into STRS/PE...

Bhutanese resettlement has had a big economic impact
Informative especially for nonmembers of North Hill. I appreciate the fact that you mention that the younger generation has an easier time than the elders but t...

Ottawa County Commissioner sworn in as new house member
Congratulations on your new appointment to the Ohio House. I'm certain you will do an outstanding job in your new role representing our district. When you have...

Holden Arboretum opens a new canopy walk and emergent tower
Visited the Holden Arboretum today to witness the incredible work you did constructing the tower and bridges.WOW! Very impressed. Knew the build had to be great...

Local club works to bring back the once-prevalent American elm
I would love to help! Where would I get some of the new Strain so I could plant them?

Four Geauga school districts consider consolidating on the Kent State campus
Berkshire was smart to merge with Ledgemont because it had shrinking enrollment and excess capacity at its high school. Now that Cardinal is dragging its feet ...

Ohio Rep. John Boccieri sworn into office and hopes to look for 'middle ground' with colleagues
Welcome back to the Statehouse, John. You are a terrific representative in the truest sense always representing the people's voice in teh district you serve. ...

Copyright © 2015 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University