What does this measure?
Total spending by public school districts, divided by total pupils.
Why is this important?
Higher spending for schools can mean better facilities, programs, and a greater range of opportunities available to students. It may also signal public support for education and a better paid, more experienced teaching workforce. However, studies have found higher spending does not necessarily lead to higher student achievement, given the many factors that contribute to student success, including parental and community influences.
How is our county doing?
In 2021, school districts in Essex County spent about $18,100 per student, close to the statewide level of $19,100. This was a 20% increase since 2008 in Essex County and a 22% increase in the state.
The highest spending districts in Essex County were Rockport ($24,900) and Masconomet ($22,200). Greater Lawrence Regional Vocational Technical was the highest spending technical school ($23,100 per student) followed by Whittier Regional Vocational Technical ($21,000 per student). Spending was lowest in Methuen, North Andover and Beverly, all at approximately $16,000.
How do we compare to similar counties?
Essex County's spending was below Middlesex, MA, which spent $19,900 per student in 2021.
Notes about the data
Figures have been adjusted to 2021 dollars. Per pupil expenditures are calculated by dividing a district's operating costs by its average enrollment across the school year. Comparable data were not available for Lake, IL.