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When it comes to school budgets, which New Jersey district is spending the most per pupil? Or per administrator?

The annual Taxpayers’ Guide to Education Spending released Wednesday by the Department of Education for 2019 is a comparative spending guide intended to help New Jersey residents learn more about the spending practices of school districts across the state.

“The Taxpayers’ Guide to Education Spending provides the public with useful information to understand local school-spending trends,” New Jersey Commissioner of Education Lamont Repollet said. “The guide serves as a springboard for discussion between local residents and school officials on local budget decisions.”

According to the latest data, for the 2018-19 school year, the statewide average budgetary cost per pupil was up 5% to $16,599. That figure doesn’t include costs like debt service, transportation, legal fees or tuition for students attending schools outside the district. Of that cost, classroom instruction makes up $9,724, support services $2,115 and administrative costs $1,884.

The guide shows that from the 2017-18 school year to the 2018-19 school year, the statewide ratio of students to teachers has stayed relatively firm at 11.8. The median teacher salary increased from $71,253 to $72,376 in that same time. The administrator-to-student ratio went down slightly from 150.8 to 148.3, and median administrative salaries increased from $124,099 to $125,838.

According to the DOE, these figures represent the state average for districts that serve students in preschool through grade 12, charter schools, county vocational school districts and county special services school districts.

The guide also compares districts of similar size and ranks them in 17 spending categories, such as total administrative costs and total classroom instruction, as well as in staff indicators such as student/teacher ratios and ratios of faculty to administrative staff.

Search for your district here.

Contact: 609-272-7251 Twitter @clairelowe

Staff Writer

I began covering South Jersey in 2008 after graduating from Rowan University with a degree in journalism. I joined The Press in 2015. In 2013, I was awarded a NJPA award for feature writing as a reporter for The Current of Hamilton Township.

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