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The Mechanics
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Budget Thu Aug 12 2010

A Tale of Three School Districts

Once upon a time there were three school districts, two of the districts were right next to each other and one was a few miles away and they were all informed that they could get new federal funding to help them retain teachers.

But once the school districts got to see the numbers they got three very different stories. The three districts were the Aurora East, Oswego and Yorkville school districts, all were consolidated districts so they taught K-12. The federal funding numbers come from the Beacon News.

But lets look at some of the numbers. First the amount that the new funding will provide to each district.


Oswego 308 $2,900,000
East Aurora $6,500,000
Yorkville $211,222

Ok, you may think that seems logical the Aurora East district has to be bigger than the Oswego and Yorkville districts... Well not really.

(Financial numbers and student numbers come from the Interactive Illinois School Report Card at NIU)

Well how many students does each district have?
Oswego 15,002
Aurora E 12,767
Yorkville 5,054

So new federal money per student
Oswego $193
Aurora E $509
Yorkville $41

New federal money as a % of instructional expenditure per student the amount in () is the instructional expenditure per student

Oswego ($4,763) about 4%
Aurora E ($4,827) about 11%
Yorkville ($4,477) so about 1%

That's right Aurora East will get about 11% of what they spend on each student in instructional expenses and Yorkville gets about 1%.

Another way to think about it, about 2 netbooks (inexpensive laptops) per student in Aurora East vs. a textbook for each student in the Yorkville district.

Well this is supposed to pay to rehire teachers, so using the average teacher salary and multiplying by 1.5 (to include benefits) how many teachers will each district be able to re-hire/add.

Number of teachers the money would pay for...
Oswego 32
Aurora 81
Yorkville 3

The Oswego district has 20 schools ( so a bit less than 1.5 teachers per school) the Aurora district has 16 schools (so over 4 teachers per school), Yorkville has 9 schools so about a 1/3rd of a teacher for each school.


So it seems that Aurora East is getting a much better deal out of this than Oswego and Yorkville is really getting the short end of the stick.

In some ways it is even worse because of Quinn's transportation cuts will impact Oswego and Yorkville more the Aurora East district. The Aurora East district does not bus so it has a much lower transportation cost per student than the other two and it appears you can not use the federal money for transportation.

 
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About Mechanics

Mechanics is the politics section of Gapers Block, reflecting the diversity of viewpoints and beliefs of Chicagoans and Illinoisans. More...
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Editor: Mike Ewing, mike@gapersblock.com
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