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ERIC Number: ED418160
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998-Mar-16
Pages: 38
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Money and School Performance. Lessons from the Kansas City Desegregation Experiment. Policy Analysis No. 298.
Ciotti, Paul
To improve the education of black students and to encourage desegregation, a federal judge ordered the Kansas City (Missouri) school district to come up with a cost-is-no-object educational plan and ordered local and state taxpayers to find the money to pay for it. Kansas City spent as much as $11,700 per pupil, more money per pupil on a cost of living adjusted basis than any other of the 280 largest school districts in the country. The money paid for higher teachers' salaries, 15 new schools, and such amenities as an Olympic-sized swimming pool, television studios, a robotics laboratory, a wildlife sanctuary and zoo, a model United Nations, and field trips to Mexico and Senegal. The student-teacher ratio became 12 or 13 to 1, the lowest of any major school district in the country. In spite of all of this, achievement test scores did not rise, the gap between black and white students did not narrow, and there was less, rather than more, integration. The experiment in Kansas City suggests that educational problems cannot be solved by throwing money at them. The structural problems of the educational system are far more than a lack of material resources. In Kansas City the focus on desegregation diverted attention from the real problem of low academic achievement. Similar things are occurring in Sausalito (California), where the affluent school system is still not enough to bring about high achievement. (SLD)
Cato Institute, 1000 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20001; phone: 202-842-0200; fax: 202-842-3490 ($6; $3 for five or more copies).
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Cato Inst., Washington, DC.