Cracking the Books: How Well Do State Education Departments Report Public School Spending?

Wyoming

F
Scoring
Per Pupil Expenditures 18.00 / 45
Total Expenditure Data 23.00 / 30
Average Salary Data 8.00 / 10
Public Accessibility 7.50 / 15
Total Score 56.50 / 100

Note: Scores reflect the data provided on each state's education department website as of December 31, 2012. For more information, please see the Grading Criteria section.

Per Pupil Expenditures

Wyoming’s Department of Education provides more than ten years of Wyoming School District Statistical Reports. Report Series #3 contains operating per pupil expenditure data, but fails to provide total per pupil expenditures. Wyoming is missing the most recent year of expenditures and fails to provide a table or graph that would allow citizens to easily compare changes in per pupil expenditures over time.

Per Pupil Expenditures
Metric
Category State District Score
Type of Per Pupil Expenditures Operating Operating
Credit Half Credit Half Credit
Years of Data 10+ years 10+ years
Score 5 / 10 5 / 10 10 / 20
Most Recent Year 2010-11 2010-11
Score 4 / 10 4 / 10 8 / 20
Historical Comparison None None
Score 0 / 2.5 0 / 2.5 0 / 5
Total 18 / 45

Total Expenditure Data

Wyoming’s Department of Education provides more than ten years of Wyoming School District Statistical Reports. Report Series #3 contains total expenditure data, including capital expenditures. Total salary expenditures are at the summary level only and there are no data on employee benefits. Wyoming is missing the most recent year of expenditures and fails to provide pension data.

Total Expenditure Data
Metric
Category State District Score
Total Expenditures Object / Summary Object / Summary
Score 4 / 4 4 / 4 8 / 8
Capital Expenditures Included Included
Score 2 / 2 2 / 2 4 / 4
Total Salary Data Summary with Benefits Summary with Benefits
Score 1 / 2 1 / 2 2 / 4
Pension Data None None
Score 0 / 2 0 / 2 0 / 4
Years of Data 10+ years 10+ years
Score 2.5 / 2.5 2.5 / 2.5 5 / 5
Most Recent Year 2010-11 2010-11
Score 2 / 2.5 2 / 2.5 4 / 5
Total 23 / 30

Average Salary Data

Wyoming provides more than five years of average salary data for teachers, administrators, and non-teaching staff through the 2011–12 school year. Data on employee benefits are not provided.

Average Salary Data
Metric
Category State District Score
Categories Covered Teachers, administrators, and non-teaching staff Teachers, administrators, and non-teaching staff
Score 1.5 / 1.5 1.5 / 1.5 3 / 3
Employee Benefits None None
Score 0 / 1 0 / 1 0 / 2
Years of Data 5+ years 5+ years
Score 1.25 / 1.25 1.25 / 1.25 2.5 / 2.5
Most Recent Year 2011-12 2011-12
Score 1.25 / 1.25 1.25 / 1.25 2.5 / 2.5
Total 8 / 10

Public Accessibility

Navigation: Financial data is difficult to locate. The homepage contains no obvious links regarding school finance or reports. The user must select “Resources,” which contains a list of links that also makes no mention of school finance, reports, or relevant data. On the left side of the page, there is a small image containing the words “Data, Information, and Reports” in very small writing (which does not turn up in a Control-F search). That page contains links to several reports, the relevant ones being the three “Wyoming Statistical Report Series.” Series 2 contains average salary data while Series 3 contains expenditure data.

Ease of Public Analysis: Wyoming’s financial data reports are in PDF format only, which limits the ability of users to analyze the data. The reports occasionally contain jargon that might confuse a layperson such as “General Fund Expenditures per ADM” rather than “per pupil expenditures.” The reports also lack instructions explaining how average salaries were calculated or which items are included in each expenditure object and function.

Public Accessibility
Category Metric Score
Navigation 3 points: Somewhat difficult for a layperson to locate the desired data. Moderate design flaws that somewhat inhibit navigability. 3 / 5
Ease of Public Analysis

Deductions for:

  • Reports in PDF format only (minus 2.5 points)
  • Use of jargon that the public cannot be reasonably expected to understand (minus 1 point)
  • Lack of instructions to read data, or unclear instructions (minus 2 points)
4.5 / 10
Total 7.5 / 15

Links