August 21, 2007
Howard County Schools Yield High Performance, Low Cost
Forbes magazine this month rated Howard County public schools seventh in the nation in its list of "Best and Worst School Districts For The Buck."
The rankings were based on the amount of money public school districts spent on each student in fiscal 2004 and measures of student performance, including students' rate of participation and mean scores on college entrance exams, and the graduation rate in 2005.
According to the article in Forbes, "Winners in this rating system are counties whose schools deliver high performance at low cost. The losers spend a lot of money and have little to show for it."
The ranking includes 97 counties, in which more than half of the public schools' per-pupil spending came from residents' property taxes. Some of the counties' per-pupil expenditures were adjusted to reflect the higher cost of living in some metropolitan areas.
Coming in at the No. 7 spot, Howard spent $9,488 per pupil in the 2004-2005 school year with 72% of the class taking SAT and earning a mean score of 1,113 on a 1,600-point scale. In addition, 93.8% of Howard's seniors graduated in 2005.