LAKE COUNTY, Fla. - There are new questions about the amount of money Lake County is spending on public education after a review comparing Lake County to nine other districts found the county spends the least per student and the least on teacher salaries.
"We've been saying it for probably the last 10 years," said Stuart Klatte of the Lake County Education Association.
Klatte said Lake's teachers aren't paid enough and that the million-dollar budget review funded in part by the Bill Gates Foundation proves it. The review compared the Lake district with several others around the country and found teacher pay and spending per pupil at the bottom.
"If you look in there, we have the least amount of funding from all those districts they compare it to," said Chris Patton of Lake County Schools.
But Patton said the administration can use the study to find ways to move money around, pulling funding from one area to beef up another to boost student achievement.
Some say while comparisons to other school systems can be helpful, they may not always be fair.
"This is a low cost-of-living community," said Vance Jochim of the Lake County Fiscal Rangers. "A number of the data points they had were larger metropolitan areas. I don't know where I'd compare dollars, but I'd compare percentages."
Another part of the study will come in later this month.
New report puts Lake County at bottom in terms of student spending,…
School sign turning away parents with kids' forgotten homework, lunch goes viral
Back to School: WFTV put school shopping to the test
Freshmen: So what do you really need to start college?
Fewer than 1-in-5 families use a tool that could limit college costs