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The Worst School District in Lancaster County Continues Soaking Up Taxpayer Money

The Worst School District in Lancaster County Continues Soaking Up Taxpayer Money

Throwing good money after bad - it's the government school way
By Trey 87 comments

Schools in Lancaster County are slated to receive about $15.4 million in one-time, emergency federal funding because of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

This boost comes from the federal $2 trillion COVID-19 relief package that was passed back in March. (The detailed release can be read here.)

“Education” in the Keystone State will get about $523 million, with 90% of that going directly to public schools. The state will use the balance for state-wide education and education infrastructure/technology.

And it’s so much worse than it sounds.

The federal tax dollars can be spent on a variety of things that no one would consider education-related such as food service, professional training, technology, cleaning supplies and mental health supports. 

And the school district in Lancaster County that gets the lion’s share of this federal giveaway?

The School District of Lancaster. Of course. Of the $15.4 million going to school districts in Lancaster, $5,172,788 will go to the School District of Lancaster. 

As I already wrote about, the School District of Lancaster is supported by the property taxes it takes from homeowners for its massive $210.6 million budget. 

The School District of Lancaster has the worst academic record in Lancaster County, despite spending more on each student than any other district.

Per pupil spending in the district is more than $18,638 as of the 2017 budget, which is as high as the average cost of public college tuition.

By comparison, Conestoga Valley School District spends about $13,000 per pupil per year, and boasts among the highest PSSA academic achievement levels. Lampeter-Strasburg spends about $16,000 per pupil and consistently boasts the highest PSSA scores in the county.

Nationally, the most recent data indicates $11,762 is spent on public education per student

The district levies the highest rate of any school district in the county, fully 21.8734 mills as of the 2019-2020 school year. (A mill is equal to $1 tax on every $1,000 of assessed value of a property).

However, it will get the bulk of the federal largesse, because the amount each school gets is proportional to the federal Title I money it received in 2019.