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Prescott Unified School District


In fiscal year 2010, Prescott Unified School District compared favorably with peer districts in both student achievement and operational efficiencies. The District’s student achievement was higher than both its peer districts’ and state averages, and it spent less per student than peer districts in administration, plant operations, food service, and transportation. Further, the District’s per-pupil spending of $6,261 was $835 less per pupil than its peer districts’ and one of the lowest per-pupil spending amounts in the State. This is because the District received less money from voter-approved budget overrides and state funding. The District’s per-pupil administrative costs were 16 percent lower than peer districts’ because it paid some administrators lower salaries. The District also had much lower plant operations costs both per student and per square foot primarily because of lower salaries and lower energy costs, and its food service program operated with a similar cost per meal as peer districts’. To accommodate its school choice policy, the District has developed an uncommon hub-style student transportation system with transfers similar to many public transportation systems. As a result, district officials estimated that about one-half of its elementary school students attend a different school than they would with traditional school boundaries. Based on cost-per-mile measures, the District’s transportation program appears efficient with a cost per mile of $2.67, which is 21 percent lower than the peer districts’ average. However, its cost per rider could not be determined because the District did not accurately count the number of riders transported. Specifically, the District double-counted some riders because they rode more than one bus both to and from school each day. The District also needs to improve controls over its fuel purchase cards and access to critical information systems.

Follow-Up Report

Additional Documents

Additional Documents