Data Analysis - Educational Inequality Essay

When it comes to education, many people believe that increased levels of per-pupil spending are positively correlated with higher overall student outcomes. Upon comparison of five various Ohio school districts, ranging from rural to city settings, It is clear that this belief is not always the case and just because a certain school district pays more per-pupil does not mean that the educational outcomes will necessarily be higher.

After taking data from miscellaneous aspects of each district, such as the number of state indicators and the performance index scores and impairing them to the instructional and total expenditures per-pupil, It is clear that while money does play a large part, there are other factors at work here.

When doing this comparison the number of state Indicators, which Is the number given out based on the percentage of students who received a proficient score on a state assessment, and the performance index score, which is the weighted average of each student’s academic achievements during the academic year, including tested and untested subjects, were extracted from the Ohio Department of Education’s 2010-2011 reports ND compared to the districts spending on each student in various ways.

What has been found by comparing this data is that while the higher achieving districts, such as Beachwood, did tend to spend quite a large amount of money per-pupil those districts that were essentially failing, such as Cleveland, also spent quite a large amount of money, so one cannot definitively say that spending more money automatically means a school district will increase its odds of obtaining higher educational outcomes.

The five school districts chosen were chosen based on the hype of district they were, with Beachwood being a more affluent suburban district, Cleveland being an Inner-city district, Black River and Wellington being more rural districts and Lyric being a more lower class suburban district. By looking at the number of state indicators it is clear that Beachwood, Black River and Wellington have Academic Achievement Compared to Expenditures for Various Ohio School Districts Name of District Number of State Indicators (Met) Performance Index Score Instructional Expenditures Pure Pupil Total School Expenditures Per Pupil Beachwood City 26 107. /120 $10,536 $19,645 Black River Local 24 100. 9/120 $5,067 $8,714 Cleveland Maple City 1 75. 7/120$8,397 $15,072 Lyric City 15 91. 4/120$5,730 $10,328 Wellington Exempted Village 2397. 1/120$5,709 $9,632 obtained a very sufficient score, even though all districts spent a different amount of money. Beachwood had the best scores overall and spent the most money out of all Twelve Locusts , out Wellington Ana Black Roller also Ana very Impressive scores out spent literally half the amount of Beachwood in every aspect.

Lyric spent about the same amount of money as both Wellington and Black River, and received a similar reference score but had a much lower number of state indicators. In terms of Number of State Indicators, which is a score varying from O to 26 Mets, Beachwood was the highest with a perfect score of 26 Mets. Black River came in second with 24 Mets, Wellington came in third with 23 Mets and Lyric and Cleveland came in fourth and fifth with Lyric having 15 Mets and Cleveland having an extremely low score of only 1 Met.

These scores follow the same pattern when it comes to the Performance Index score, which is a score varying from O to 120, putting Beachwood once again in iris place with 107. 4, Black river in second with 100. 9, Wellington in third with 97. 1, Lyric in fourth with 91. 4 and Cleveland once again in last with the low score of only 75. 7. When you look at the table another pattern starts to arise when comparing the number of total school expenditures, which is made up of administrative, building operations, staff support, student support and industrial expenditures, to the performance index scores; the more money spent the higher the score.

But this pattern is broken by the inclusion of the school district of Cleveland. In terms of pending, the graph shows that Beachwood once again tops all of the other districts in terms of spending. Beachwood spent roughly $19,645 total on each pupil and about $10,536 on instructional expenditures alone. Black River spent about $8,714 total on each pupil and about $5,067 on instructional expenditures. Wellington spent $9,632 total on each student and $5,709 on instructional expenditures. Lyric spent a bit more than Wellington and Black River with a total expenditure cost of $10,328 and $5,730 on instructional expenditures.

And Cleveland spent the second most, following Beachwood, with $1 5,072 being spent on all total expenditures and $8,397 being spent on all industrial expenditures. Cleveland spent the second largest amount of money and yet had the worse scores. This goes to show that even if you spend a large amount of money on a student, in Cleveland case Just over fifteen thousand dollars, it does not mean the students will perform well, in comparison to Black River spending only Just below nine thousand dollars.

This Just shows that other factors including the student’s willingness to learn, attendance, any learning disabilities, the searchers teaching styles and other positive and negative variables do impact a student’s performance more so then Just money alone. By looking at the table you can see that the areas with the most poverty do have the lowest scores, so even if the more affluent locations spend less money than the poverty ridden districts these places of poverty will still do far worse because of all the negatively impacting factors that can be found in these poor places.

Another factor that can be brought into light is how the money is being distributed, even though Cleveland is paying more than Wellington, the way they are spending the money is different. For example Cleveland spent a larger percentage of their total expenditures on administrative and building costs than Wellington, and Wellington spent a larger percentage than Cleveland did on pupil and staff support services.

So even though Wellington spent less money, they put the money they did spend to a better use than Cleveland. The same theme can be seen with all of the districts, with those putting a larger percentage of their total expenditures towards the pupils and not Just building and administrative costs avail netter overall scores, save Tort Beachwood, out Decease Beacon Is a more affluent location they have the extra money to distribute to these other places without concern.

One last factor that appears to be affecting the educational outcomes of these different districts is not Just the total expenditures, but the instructional expenditures exclusively. Instruction expenditures are those expenditures that go towards the teacher’s and education professionals salaries and classroom materials. It is often believed that those schools with the best materials, equipment, smaller class sizes and best teachers will perform much higher than those that do not.

When you look at the table, it appears that those with the highest scores spent much less on instructional expenses than those with the lowest scores, but, when you look at the percentage of money that was spent on instructional expenditures, you will find that those districts with higher scores actually paid a higher percentage than those that did not. This Just proves that it is not a question of how much money is spent, but where the money that is spent goes and how it is utilized.

From looking at the data on the table it is clear that those districts that have a higher percentage of poverty but spent more money also have lower scores, showing that money is not everything. The students themselves and nonofficial factors also play a large role as to why some school districts have high test scores as opposed to another. Perhaps one school focuses more on test preparation while another school focuses more on overall grades and GAP. There are many variables that affect why not all schools are equal, and while money does play a large part of the educational outcomes of each student, it is not the sole reason.

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