Albuquerque Public Schools spending rises to $22,877 per pupil

The Rio Grande Foundation does its best to track the budget for large government agencies. One of the very largest in New Mexico is Albuquerque Public Schools.

We have always taken the simple approach when calculating the District’s budget: divide dollars spent by the number of students. As expected, particularly given the abandonment of APS by families with school-aged children, the District is receiving more and more money to educate fewer and fewer students.

In FY 2020, the District spent $1,475,755,646 to educate 79,366 students. That comes to $18,594.31 per student.

In FY 2022, the District spent $1,658,589,579 to educate just 72,500 students. That comes to a mind-blowing $22,877.10.

By comparison, tuition at Sandia Prep, one of the top private schools in the State cost $23,410. St. Pius X, the City of Albuquerque’s largest Catholic High School cost “just” $12,900 per student.

With more money than ever flowing into New Mexico’s government schools (and more families than ever fleeing them), it is very likely that APS’ per-pupil costs will skyrocket for years to come.

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4 Replies to “Albuquerque Public Schools spending rises to $22,877 per pupil”

  1. For any business this would be a no-brainer: downsize intelligently by closing underutilized facilities and reducing employment while keeping a productive ratio of teachers to administrators. Let’s see what APS does.

  2. Paul, could much of the increase be attributed to the COVID-19 masking and testing? As I recall, Senator Jeff Steinborn wanted to spend tax dollars on that, millions as I recall. All for a population that stands little risk from the disease.

  3. I assume those costs include the new raises for teachers? If not, the cost is even higher. As stated from a business standpoint, costs must be made, the fat cut. but as we all know, government is not a business.

  4. “Reforming” APS is simply shifting deck chairs on the Titanic. The only hope for NM schools would be to follow the European model of letting public funds follow the STUDENT to public OR private school. Would create instant competition for the student dollar and break up the public school monopoly. This is the favored approach of Republican gubernatorial candidate Greg Zanetti. Here is the wallet hub link ranking NM as the WORST public school in the country: https://wallethub.com/edu/e/states-with-the-best-schools/5335

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