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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

8/19/2014 (10 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

New report outlines non-teacher employees outnumber teachers

Non-teacher employees make up 50% of public school employees, a number which has grown 130% since 1970, a new study claims.

A new study shows that massive amounts of funding go to non-teacher staff in schools, which has little impact on education quality.

A new study shows that massive amounts of funding go to non-teacher staff in schools, which has little impact on education quality.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

8/19/2014 (10 months ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: US, Education


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Using data from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the Thomas B. Fordham Institute found that the growth of non-teaching staff has greatly outpaced student growth over the past four decades.

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From 1960 to 2010, the number of students increased by 8.6%, while the number of non-teaching personnel increased by 130%. Non-teachers now consume over a quarter of all educational expenditures the study reported.

A study done previously by the Friedman Foundation found that "states could have saved more than $24 billion annually if they had increased/decreased the employment of administrators and other non-teaching staff at the same rate as students between 1992 and 2009."

Regardless of these expenditures, tests scores and graduation rates show little evidence of improvement.

"As I showed in my study," said Ben Scafidi, author of The School Staffing Surge, "student achievement in public schools did not rise between 1970 and 2008-even though staffing skyrocketed."

"The national statistics obtainable from the U.S. Department of Education, for instance, are rich with information about school teachers and principals," the Fordham study pointed out, "but crude and unhelpful when it comes to non-teaching personnel."

"At a time when budgets are tight and achievement weak, it's unthinkable not to consider what personnel shifts might strengthen both performance and efficiency."

There are some states with a much higher ratio of non-teacher employees per student than others. Virginia, Vermont and Wyoming have 104 non-teachers for every 1,000 students, while Nevada and South Carolina have just 26 and 28 non-teachers for every 1,000 students.

The American Federation of Teachers issued a press release following the publishing of the study saying that: "school support staff are an essential part of our public schools. To imply that we should thin their ranks is a direct threat to the public school students who rely on them."

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