You Paid For It -Small Illinois school districts

You Paid For It
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ST. LOUIS (KTVI) - The You Paid For It team investigated all the wasted money on tiny school districts in Illinois.

Investigator Elliott Davis visited the Brooklyn School District, which has less than 200 students and a superintendent making an annual salary of $115,000. That district has a $2 million budget.

Next door is the Venice School District, which also has fewer than 200 students. Its superintendent makes $130,000 a year. It has a $2.9 million budget.

Taxpayers are paying for duplicate services at the two districts, such as technology, human resources, administration, and transportation.

Statewide, Illinois may be paying $90 million too much because of far too many small school districts. Illinois has more than 800 school districts, around 350 of the non-rural districts have enrollment of less than 100 students.

And the tiny school districts still aren't making the grade even with what you paying so much. Just 3 percent of the students in the Brooklyn School District met state educational standards. Only 7.7 percent of those in Venice meet the state standards.

Right now, neither of the school boards are contemplating consolidation. Students suffer in the end because of the lack of resources that a larger school district could offer.

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Do you have a news tip for Elliott Davis? His "You Paid For It Series" on government waste has made him a champion of the underdog in St. Louis. Email our investigative unit here.

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