A proposed systematic approach to cost analysis for selected secondary trade and industrial education programs in Virginia
Parham, Prince Edward
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The purposes of this study were: (1) to develop a systematic approach to fiscal data collection and (2) to analyze these data to determine the cost of selected trade and industrial education programs in Virginia. The four vocational-technical centers utilized in the study were selected according to: (1) geographic location and (2) years of operation. Centers chosen were urban and rural, representing three geographical regions of the State of Virginia. The objectives of this study were: (1) to set forth in general terms the components of cost analysis for selected trade and industrial education programs in Virginia, (2) to identify the cost of specific selected trade and industrial education programs in Virginia, (3) to present the methodology for a systematic approach for fiscal data collection in selected trade and industrial education programs in Virginia, and (4) to present cost data which may be utilized by administrators and local directors of vocational education in evaluating selected trade and industrial education programs. Limitations of the study were: (1) all data were based on actual expenditures for a one year period, (2) vocational-technical centers were selected which had been in operation for at least four years, (3) only regular trade and industrial education programs were utilized in this study, and (4) transportation of students and amortization of equipment were not included in this study. Expenditure items used in the study were determined by a panel of experts who agreed that the expenditures were attributable to vocational education costs. All expenditures utilized in this study were included in the list approved by the panel. The study required personal examination of records and reports maintained by: (1) vocational-technical centers, (2) local school agencies, and (3) the Division of Vocational Education, State Department of Education. Fiscal data were retrieved and analyzed by vocational- technical centers and by specific programs which permitted a per student cost to be attained. The study revealed that: (1) instructional salaries comprised the largest percentage of the total expenditures, (2) maintenance appeared to be very low in the percentage of total cost, (3) 68.4 percent of total costs was borne by the local school district and 31.6 percent was borne by the state, (4) the program with the largest percentage of total cost was Practical Nursing, (5) centers offering more programs experienced a lower per student cost than centers offering fewer programs, (6) there was a range of per student expenditure from $528.11 to $832.56, with an average per student cost of $692.27 for all four centers, and (7) the range of costs per student for all programs at all centers was from $296.55 to $1,096.03. Because of diverse accounting and expenditure methods found in local school districts the necessary forms for fiscal data collection and analyses were developed. The systematic approach and design was as follows: (1) determine which are bonafide costs, (2) condense the aforementioned classification list to fit the local accounting system, (3) collect data, (4) determine sources of funding, (5) prorate cost, (6) compute total cost for each expenditure classification, (7) compute total cost for each program area, (8) compute the unit costs, and (9) list student cost by programs. A self-contained packet for the systematic approach and analysis utilized in the study was developed and is included in Chapter 5 for use by local directors of vocational education.
- Doctoral Dissertations