California school district spending and test scores

Trona Joint 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 Trona Joint Unified compare to other California districts?

Spending per student

$14,915   Median: $8,234

API score in 2010

708   Median: 783

$14,915 spent per student ($4.2 million total expenditures)

Districts with similar spending per student
Surprise Valley Joint Unified $15,207
Tamalpais Union High $15,100
Howell Mountain Elementary $14,996
Trona Joint Unified $14,915
Indian Diggings Elementary $14,913
Manton Joint Union Elementary $14,857
Bitterwater-Tully Union Elementary $14,453
Spending per student
in districts with similar attendance
Trona Joint Unified (280.00) $14,915
Shandon Joint Unified (281.50) $11,188
Lagunitas Elementary (270.30) $10,868
Guerneville Elementary (280.50) $9,389
South Fork Union Elementary (269.00) $9,326
Banta Elementary (280.30) $7,973
Manzanita Elementary (267.70) $7,004
Spending per student in adjacent districts
Death Valley Unified $27,770
Trona Joint Unified $14,915
Lone Pine Unified $14,207
Silver Valley Unified $10,360
Sierra Sands Unified $8,283
Barstow Unified $8,096

708 API score in 2010

Districts with similar API scores in 2010
Sunnyside Union Elementary 708
Kern Union High 708
Orange Center Elementary 708
Trona Joint Unified 708
Big Springs Union Elementary 708
Hanford Joint Union High 707
Hayward Unified 707
API scores in 2010
in districts with similar attendance
Manzanita Elementary (267.70) 879
Guerneville Elementary (280.50) 851
Banta Elementary (280.30) 776
Lagunitas Elementary (270.30) 774
Shandon Joint Unified (281.50) 755
South Fork Union Elementary (269.00) 755
Trona Joint Unified (280.00) 708
API scores in 2010 in adjacent districts
Sierra Sands Unified 788
Silver Valley Unified 749
Lone Pine Unified 738
Death Valley Unified 737
Barstow Unified 734
Trona Joint Unified 708
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