Special Report

This Is the Wealthiest School District in Wyoming

Disparities in school spending have been a point of contention in the American public education system for decades. Because public schools typically receive the bulk of their funding from local sources such as property taxes, wealthy districts are often better funded than poorer ones.

While studies have shown that higher per pupil spending can improve student outcomes, there are countless other factors – both inside the classroom and outside of it – that can impact a student’s likelihood of success. One of them is financial security at home.

For students from low-income families, setbacks can be more difficult to recover from due to limited supporting resources. A recent report published by the Georgetown Center on Education and the Workforce found that children from low-income households who receive high scores on standardized aptitude tests in kindergarten have only a 3 in 10 chance of graduating from college and landing a good entry-level job as a young adult. Meanwhile, children from well-off families who score poorly on the same tests have a 7 in 10 chance.

This study suggests that even if per-pupil spending were equal across the thousands of school districts in the United States, students in high-income areas would still have a considerable advantage.

Of active districts in Wyoming with at least 100 students, Laramie County School District No. 2 – located in Laramie County – ranks as the wealthiest. Households in the district have an average annual income of $98,751, compared to the statewide average of $83,583, according to five-year estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2020 American Community Survey.

Due in part to the strong local tax base, education spending in the district is higher than the state average. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, per pupil spending in the district was $17,849 in the 2018-2019 school year, the most recent year of available data, compared to an average of $16,228 across all schools in Wyoming.

 

Wealthiest school district Avg. household income in district ($) Avg. household income in state ($)
Alabama: Mountain Brook City $238,595 $71,964
Alaska: Cordova City School District $112,521 $98,811
Arizona: Cave Creek Unified District $162,758 $84,380
Arkansas: Valley View School District $124,059 $69,357
California: Hillsborough City Elementary $437,655 $111,622
Colorado: Elbert School District No. 200 $97,038 $100,933
Connecticut: Darien School District $365,528 $115,337
Delaware: Appoquinimink School District $125,597 $92,308
Florida: St. Johns $113,475 $83,104
Georgia: Forsyth County $128,476 $85,691
Hawaii: N/A N/A $107,348
Idaho: Mccall-Donnelly Joint School District $90,524 $77,399
Illinois: Winnetka School District No. 36 $371,021 $95,115
Indiana: Zionsville Community Schools $174,109 $76,984
Iowa: Sergeant Bluff-Luton Community School District $115,226 $80,316
Kansas: Spring Hill $121,345 $82,103
Kentucky: Oldham County $128,725 $72,318
Louisiana: N/A N/A $73,759
Maine: Falmouth Public Schools $170,467 $78,301
Maryland: Montgomery County Public Schools $149,437 $114,236
Massachusetts: Dover $373,970 $115,964
Michigan: Bloomfield Hills Schools $202,722 $80,803
Minnesota: Orono Public School District $211,325 $96,814
Mississippi: Madison County School District $112,066 $65,156
Missouri: Ladue $213,970 $78,194
Montana: Blue Creek Elem $114,007 $76,834
Nebraska: Elkhorn Public Schools $142,333 $82,306
Nevada: Storey County School District $92,393 $84,350
New Hampshire: Rye School District $198,028 $101,292
New Jersey: Rumson Borough School District $345,342 $117,868
New Mexico: Los Alamos Public Schools $141,162 $70,241
New York: Scarsdale Union Free School District $466,343 $105,304
North Carolina: Wake County Schools $106,822 $79,620
North Dakota: South Heart School District No. 9 $114,918 $85,506
Ohio: Orange City $243,210 $78,797
Oklahoma: Deer Creek $140,124 $74,195
Oregon: West Linn-Wilsonville School District $132,574 $88,137
Pennsylvania: Lower Merion School District $218,005 $87,262
Rhode Island: Barrington $177,659 $92,427
South Carolina: Lexington School District No. 5 $96,105 $76,390
South Dakota: Harrisburg School District 41-2 $118,082 $77,932
Tennessee: Collierville $143,456 $76,937
Texas: Friendswood Independent School District $167,090 $89,506
Utah: Canyons District $114,020 $94,452
Vermont: Norwich School District $155,346 $83,767
Virginia: Falls Church City Public Schools $181,261 $106,023
Washington: Lake Washington School District $170,160 $103,669
West Virginia: Jefferson County Schools $96,911 $65,332
Wisconsin: Maple Dale-Indian Hill School District $240,795 $82,757
Wyoming: Laramie County School District #2 $98,751 $83,583

 

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