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Knox County ranks fourth out of five school TN districts in spending per student

The Joint Education Committee will discuss a new report that looks at performance and spending in the 5 biggest school districts in Tennessee.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — A new report comparing the performance and spending the 5 largest school districts in Tennessee found that Knox County ranks fourth in spending per student.

The report compared Davidson, Shelby, Hamilton, Rutherford and Knox Counties. It found that Knox County spends around $9,871 per student, lower than the state average of $10,547.

Davidson County spent the most money per student out of the five counties, at $13,754. Rutherford County spent the least, at $9,163, according to the report.

Knox County Schools also ranked last for average salaries of classroom teachers. However, officials said this is because the county has a proportionally higher number of teachers and a lower funding level compared to other counties.

The report also found that there were fewer students per teacher on average, compared to the state. Officials said there were around 13.5 students per teacher, compared to the state's average of 14 students.

Knox County also ranked higher than the state average for its percentage of students at or above grade level in mathematics, English and social studies. In Knox County, 39.4 percent of students were at or above grade level, compared to the state average of 36.4 percent.

Knox County also reported 40.2 percent of students with at least a third-grade reading proficiency, higher than any other county in the report.