California school district spending and test scores

Taft Union High School District

Despite years of efforts to equalize spending in California schools, some districts receive thousands of dollars more per student than others. And although some districts spent much more than the average, the bigger expenditure didn't assure higher scores on the state's Academic Performance Index, which is based on student test scores and other academic measures. Download a spreadsheet of spending per student and Academic Performance Index data for all school districts here.

How does Taft Union High compare to other California districts?

Spending per student

$21,932   Median: $8,234

API score in 2010

715   Median: 783

$21,932 spent per student ($21.3 million total expenditures)

Districts with similar spending per student
Eastern Sierra Unified $22,998
Coffee Creek Elementary $22,657
Leggett Valley Unified $22,446
Taft Union High $21,932
Vista Del Mar Union Elementary $21,904
Midway Elementary $21,888
Elkins Elementary $21,794
Spending per student
in districts with similar attendance
Taft Union High (969.80) $21,932
Santa Ynez Valley Union High (1,004.00) $9,547
Corning Union High (992.90) $9,001
Cottonwood Union Elementary (967.90) $8,429
Esparto Unified (1,003.60) $8,082
Pixley Union Elementary (956.80) $7,367
Washington Union Elementary (948.20) $6,908
Spending per student in adjacent districts
Taft Union High $21,932
Maricopa Unified $10,844
Kern Union High $9,109
Wasco Union High $8,704
Buttonwillow Union Elementary $8,176
Lost Hills Union Elementary $8,029
Lakeside Union Elementary $7,454
Show more adjacent districts

715 API score in 2010

Districts with similar API scores in 2010
Armona Union Elementary 715
Oxnard Elementary 715
Riverbank Unified 715
Taft Union High 715
San Jacinto Unified 715
Terra Bella Union Elementary 715
Warner Unified 714
API scores in 2010
in districts with similar attendance
Washington Union Elementary (948.20) 903
Santa Ynez Valley Union High (1,004.00) 836
Cottonwood Union Elementary (967.90) 816
Esparto Unified (1,003.60) 736
Taft Union High (969.80) 715
Corning Union High (992.90) 697
Pixley Union Elementary (956.80) 677
API scores in 2010 in adjacent districts
Atascadero Unified 804
Panama-Buena Vista Union Elementary 790
Rio Bravo-Greeley Union Elementary 785
Lakeside Union Elementary 773
Lost Hills Union Elementary 749
Taft Union High 715
Kern Union High 708
Show more adjacent districts
A note about the data: Spending figures refer to "current expense of education" per student in average daily attendance in 2009-10. The figures exclude certain expenditures, such as retiree benefits, food services and facilities acquisition and construction costs. Figures should be interpreted in the context of local conditions.

The state's nearly 1,000 school districts are responsible for reporting the information to the state. If individual districts spot problems with the state-reported statistics in our database, California Watch will confirm and update the data while encouraging districts to correct any errors with the state so that the public has the most accurate data available.

Interactive by Agustin Armendariz and Michael Corey. Reporting by Louis Freedberg and Stephen K. Doig.

Source: California Department of Education
Filed under: K-12