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Characteristics of the 100 Largest School Districts in the United States: 1999-2000
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The information provided in this publication was reported by state education agency officials to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) for the Common Core of Data (CCD). It relates to student membership and staff in public schools and school districts in the United States and outlying areas during the 1999-2000 school year, graduate and dropout counts for the 1998-99 school year, and to revenues and expenditures for fiscal year (FY) 1998.
  • The 100 largest public school districts, representing less than 1 percent (0.6 percent) of all school districts in the nation, were responsible for the education of 23.0 percent of all public school students (table A).
  • The 100 largest districts employed 21.2 percent of the nation's public school teachers, accounted for 16.5 percent of all public schools and 19.1 percent of public high school completers (table A).
  • The 100 largest school districts had larger school sizes than the average school district (704 students compared to 507). In addition to larger school sizes, the 100 largest school districts also had a higher mean pupil/teacher ratio, 17.5 to 1 compared to 16.1 to 1 for the average school district (table A).
  • Three states, Florida, Texas, and California, accounted for almost 40 percent of the 100 largest school districts (appendix D).
  • The proportion of minority students in the 100 largest school districts was 68.0 percent, compared to 39.6 percent in all school districts (table C).
  • Among schools that reported free and reduced-price lunch eligibility, 53.6 percent of the students in the 100 largest school districts were eligible for free and reduced-price lunch, compared to 38.9 percent of all students in reporting states (table C).
  • In FY 1998 (the 1997-98 school year), current expenditures per pupil in the 100 largest school districts ranged from a low of $3,210 in the Puerto Rico Department of Education to a high of $10,293 in the Boston School District, Massachusetts (table 10).
  • While the number of students, teachers, and schools has increased between 1989-90 and 1999-2000, the proportion of the national totals that the 100 largest school districts comprised of all these dimensions was essentially unchanged (table D).

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