ERIC Number: ED433605
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1998-Feb
Geographic Variations in Public Schools' Costs. Working Paper Series.
Chambers, Jay G.
This report addresses the following question: How much more or less does it cost to provide the same levels of educational resources across different geographic locations in the United States? To answer this question, the report develops a comprehensive geographic cost-of-education index (GCEI) that focuses on the prices of inputs (personnel and nonpersonnel items) used in the provision of school services purchased by schools. This approach builds on previous work and uses a "hedonic wage" model to examine the overall patterns of variation in the salaries and wages of certificated and noncertificated personnel. The model provides a comprehensive framework for understanding the various factors that underlie variations in the patterns of employee compensation. Using the model, a comprehensive geographical cost-of-education index was constructed for each school district in the U.S. for each of three school years: 1987-88, 1990-91, and 1993-94. The most dramatic finding was the differences across states in the access to educational resources and services and the relationship between actual and real (cost-adjusted) spending. Results show that the highest cost district in the U.S. spends more than 2.6 times as much as the lowest cost district to recruit and employ similar school personnel. (RJM)
Descriptors: Comparative Analysis, Cost Estimates, Educational Finance, Educational Needs, Elementary Secondary Education, National Surveys, Needs Assessment, Profiles, Public Schools, School Demography, Tables (Data)
U.S. Department of Education, Office of Educational Research and Improvement, National Center for Educational Statistics, 555 New Jersey Avenue, N.W., Room 400, Washington, DC 20208-5654; Tel: 202-219-1831 (Free).
Publication Type: Numerical/Quantitative Data; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Center for Education Statistics (ED), Washington, DC.