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Rochester district among top in nation for per-pupil spending

By NATE DOUGHERTY - 9/6/2012 3:37:02 PM

The Rochester City School District ranks in the top 10 nationally among large districts for per-pupil spending, an analysis by Govistics found.

The analysis looked at the largest districts in the United States, those with enrollments of 25,000 or more students, and found that in 2010 RCSD ranked No. 7 among highest-spending districts. Govistics is a Web-based product of the Center for Governmental Research Inc.

RCSD spent $20,984 per pupil. It was not the only upstate district on the list. Buffalo’s school district ranked No. 3 in spending at $26,903 per pupil. The top-spending district on the list was in Washington, D.C., which spent $29,409 per pupil.

There was a correlation between spending and poverty rates in the districts, Govistics found. Districts with more than one-quarter of their students in poverty spent an average of $15,000 per student compared with an average of $10,800 for the remaining large districts. Among the top 10 spenders, roughly one-third of students were below the federal poverty line.

Among the top 10 spenders in report, Rochester had the third-highest poverty rate at 39 percent, trailing Cleveland and Cincinnati.

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