California school district spending and test scores

Riverside Unified 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 Riverside Unified compare to other California districts?

Spending per student

$8,055   Median: $8,234

API score in 2010

781   Median: 783

$8,055 spent per student ($323.4 million total expenditures)

Districts with similar spending per student
Oxnard Elementary $8,058
Elk Grove Unified $8,057
Lemoore Union High $8,057
Riverside Unified $8,055
Exeter Union High $8,054
Taft City Elementary $8,047
Morongo Unified $8,047
Spending per student
in districts with similar attendance
San Bernardino City Unified (48,151.20) $10,175
Sacramento City Unified (41,653.20) $8,972
San Juan Unified (39,106.50) $8,638
Sweetwater Union High (39,163.90) $8,612
Garden Grove Unified (46,503.20) $8,193
Riverside Unified (40,155.80) $8,055
Fontana Unified (38,913.60) $7,781
Spending per student in adjacent districts
Riverside Unified $8,055
Colton Joint Unified $7,936
Alvord Unified $7,775
Moreno Valley Unified $7,688
Jurupa Unified $7,601
Corona-Norco Unified $7,303
Val Verde Unified $6,740

781 API score in 2010

Districts with similar API scores in 2010
Outside Creek Elementary 781
Buena Vista Elementary 781
South Bay Union Elementary 781
Riverside Unified 781
Carpinteria Unified 781
Lake Tahoe Unified 781
Grass Valley Elementary 780
API scores in 2010
in districts with similar attendance
Garden Grove Unified (46,503.20) 802
San Juan Unified (39,106.50) 788
Riverside Unified (40,155.80) 781
Sweetwater Union High (39,163.90) 758
Sacramento City Unified (41,653.20) 753
Fontana Unified (38,913.60) 731
San Bernardino City Unified (48,151.20) 699
API scores in 2010 in adjacent districts
Corona-Norco Unified 801
Riverside Unified 781
Val Verde Unified 780
Alvord Unified 752
Jurupa Unified 743
Moreno Valley Unified 716
Colton Joint Unified 710
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