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Public School Student, Staff, and Graduate Counts by State: School Year 2001-02--Ed Tabs: April, 2004
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This annual report presents findings from the Common Core of Data (CCD) ?State Nonfiscal Survey of Public Elementary/Secondary Education: School Year 2001?02.? Data for this annual NCES survey are collected directly from state education agencies and include the total number of students, teachers, and graduates in the United States . 1 See the Technical Notes for more details on the data collection.

Data from the 2001-02 CCD survey provide answers to many questions about public elementary and secondary education including the following:

  • How many students were enrolled in public elementary and secondary schools?
  • How many teachers worked in public elementary and secondary schools?
  • How many and what kinds of staff worked in public elementary and secondary schools?
  • What was the racial/ethnic background of students enrolled in public schools?
  • How many students graduated from public high school during the previous school year (2000-01)?
  • How many students were educated in Department of Defense, Bureau of Indian Affairs, and outlying area schools? (Data on Department of Defense, Bureau of Indian Affairs, and outlying area schools are discussed separately. These data are not included in national totals.)


How many students were enrolled in public elementary and secondary schools?

In the 2001-02 school year, there were 47.7 million students enrolled in public elementary and secondary schools in the 50 states and the District of Columbia (table 1).2 Of these students, 26.3 million (55.2 percent) were in prekindergarten through grade 6, an additional 20.9 million (43.9 percent) were in grades 7 through 12, and the remaining 0.6 million (1.0 percent) were ungraded students3 (figure 1). Not including prekindergarten or ungraded classes, grade 9 had the most students while grade 12 had the fewest.

Figure 1.-Percentage of students, by grade: School year 2001-02

Figure 1. Percentage of students, by grade: School year 2001-02

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Common Core of Data (CCD), "State Nonfiscal Survey of Public Elementary/Secondary Education," 2001-02.

California had the most public elementary and secondary school students (6.2 million), followed by Texas (4.2 million) and New York (2.9 million) (table 1). Thirteen states had over 1 million public elementary and secondary students in the 2001-02 school year. The District of Columbia (75,392) and Wyoming (88,128) were the only two to have fewer than 100,000 students. Nine states (Alaska, Delaware, Hawaii, Montana, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont, and Wyoming) and the District of Columbia had fewer than 200,000 public elementary and secondary students in the 2001-02 school year.

The 47.7 million students enrolled in the 2001-02 school year represents a 13.4 percent increase in the number of students being served in the public elementary and secondary school system since the 1991-92 school year (table 10). Between the 1991-92 and 2001-02 school years, Nevada had the largest percentage increase (68.5 percent) in the number of students. Nine states (Iowa, Louisiana, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, West Virginia, and Wyoming) and the District of Columbia had a decrease in the number of students between these years. Wyoming had the largest percentage decrease in students, with a 13.7 percent drop.


How many teachers worked in public elementary and secondary schools?

About 3.0 million full-time-equivalent teachers provided instruction in public elementary and secondary schools in the 2001-02 school year (table 2). Among this group, 56.3 percent (1.7 million) were elementary school teachers (including prekindergarten and kindergarten teachers), 36.0 percent (1.1 million) were secondary school teachers, and 7.8 percent (232,654) were teachers who taught ungraded classes or were not assigned a specific grade (figure 2). Eight states had over 100,000 teachers (California, Florida, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Texas). Two of these, California and Texas, had over a quarter million teachers each.

Figure 2.-Percentage of public elementary and secondary teachers, by level of instruction: School year 2001-02

Figure 2. Percentage of public elementary and secondary teachers, by level of instruction: School year 2001-02

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Common Core of Data (CCD), "State Nonfiscal Survey of Public Elementary/Secondary Education," 2001-02.

While there was a 13.4 percent increase in students between the 1991?92 and 2001?02 school years, there was a 23.3 percent increase in the number of teachers during this period (table 10). As with the number of students, Nevada also had the largest percentage increase in the number of teachers (69.0 percent). Only the District of Columbia and one state had a decrease in the number of teachers between these two school years. The number of teachers went down by 22.0 percent in the District of Columbia and by 4.1 percent in West Virginia.
The ratio of total students to total teachers for the nation was 15.9 students per teacher in the 2001-02 school year (table 2). Student/teacher ratios ranged from a low of 11.8 students per teacher in Vermont to a high of 21.8 in Utah. The median student/teacher ratio was 15.0 (Oklahoma); that is, half the states had a student/teacher ratio greater than 15.0 and half had a lower ratio (derived from table 2). Student/teacher ratios should not be interpreted as average class size, because not all teachers are assigned to a class (e.g., music and art teachers who serve more than one class in elementary schools).

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How many and what kinds of staff members worked in public elementary and secondary schools?

In addition to the teachers enumerated previously, an additional 2,904,864 staff members were employed in public schools (table 3). In the 2001-02 school year, a total of 674,906 instructional aides directly assisted teachers in providing instruction, and an additional 45,936 instructional coordinators and supervisors assisted teachers with activities such as curriculum development and in-service training. Teachers made up 50.8 percent of all staff in the 2001-02 school year, and instructional aides and coordinators made up an additional 12.2 percent of staff (figure 2). The percentage of all staff who were teachers ranged from 65.0 percent in South Carolina to 42.6 percent in Kentucky. Vermont had a relatively low percentage of teachers per staff (47.4 percent), the highest percentage of instructional aides (22.2 percent), and the lowest student/teacher ratio (11.8) (table 2).

Another 26.2 percent4 of all staff (librarians, counselors, and other support staff) provided support services to schools and students (table 3 and figure 3). Staff members providing support included 100,052 guidance counselors and 54,349 librarians. This translates to 477 students for every guidance counselor reported, on average, and 877 students for each librarian (derived from tables 1 and 3). An additional 1.4 million staff members provided other support services for students. These services included food, health, library assistance, maintenance, transportation, security, and other services in the nation's public schools.

Figure 3.-Percentage of public elementary and secondary staff, by type: School year 2001-02

Figure 3. Percentage of public elementary 
            and secondary staff, by type: School year 2001-02

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Common Core of Data (CCD), "State Nonfiscal Survey of Public Elementary/Secondary Education," 2001-02.

There were 160,806 school administrators (mostly principals and assistant principals), 63,351 school district administrators, and 412,911 school and district administrative support staff. Administrators and administrative support staff made up 10.8 percent of all education staff.


What was the racial/ethnic background of students enrolled in public schools?

In the 2001-02 school year, racial/ethnic data were reported for 47.4 million of the 47.7 million students enrolled in public elementary and secondary schools in the 50 states and the District of Columbia (table 4). White, non-Hispanic students made up the majority of students (60.3 percent5), followed by Black, non-Hispanic and Hispanic students (17.2 and 17.1 percent, respectively) (figure 4 and table 5). Asian/Pacific Islander students made up 4.2 percent and American Indian/Alaska Native students made up 1.2 percent of the public school population.

In six states (California, Hawaii, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, and Texas) and the District of Columbia, 50 percent or more of students were non-White (table 5). Black, non-Hispanic students made up more than 50 percent of all students in the District of Columbia and Mississippi. New Mexico reported 51.0 percent of its students as Hispanic, and Hawaii reported 72.3 percent of its student body as Asian/Pacific Islander. No state reported a majority of its public school student body as American Indian/Alaska Native, but in Alaska 25.5 percent of students were designated as American Indian/Alaska Native. Four states (Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, and West Virginia) reported that over 90 percent of their students were White, non-Hispanic.

Figure 4.-Percentage of public elementary and secondary students, by race/ethnicity: School year 2001-02

Figure 4. Percentage of public elementary and secondary students, by race/ethnicity: School year 2001-02

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Common Core of Data (CCD), "State Nonfiscal Survey of Public Elementary/Secondary Education," 2001-02.


How many students graduated from high school during the 2000-01 school year?

Some 2.5 million students received high school diplomas in the 50 states and the District of Columbia during the 2000-01 school year and subsequent summer (table 6). Another 42,452 received other high school completion credentials (e.g., certificates of attendance). This total does not include data for New Hampshire or Wisconsin, which could not report this information. These high school completers only made up 1.7 percent of all high school completers (diploma recipients and other high school completers, not including high school equivalency recipients). There were additional students who earned a high school equivalency certificate (including GEDs and state equivalency tests); however, a national total cannot be computed, because a number of states did not report this data. Some states grant only diplomas and high school equivalency certificates and do not recognize any other types of high school completion. Because of this, diploma counts from different states are not necessarily comparable.

This report also presents the numbers of diploma recipients, other high school completers, and high school equivalency recipients by racial/ethnic group in tables 7, 8, and 9. Because not all states report these high school completer categories by race, national totals cannot be calculated.


How many students were educated in Department of Defense and Bureau of Indian Affairs schools?

Two federal offices, the Department of Defense (DoD) and the Department of the Interior, also administer public schools. The DoD administers schools inside and outside the boundaries of the United States for eligible minor dependents of DoD military and civilian personnel on official assignments. More than 100,000 students attended DoD schools in the 2001-02 school year (73,212 outside the United States and 32,847 inside the United States) (table 1). DoD schools employed 7,640 teachers, and had student/teacher ratios of 14.2 for schools outside the United States and 13.2 for those inside the United States (table 2). Over 50 percent of DoD school students were White, non-Hispanic (table 5). In the overseas schools, 19.1 percent were Black, non-Hispanic, 9.3 percent were Hispanic, and 9.1 percent were Asian/Pacific Islander. In the domestic schools, 25.8 were Black, non-Hispanic, 18.5 percent were Hispanic, and 3.5 percent were Asian/Pacific Islander.

Over 46,000 students attended the Department of the Interior, Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) schools (table 1). The governance of BIA schools differs from that of the federal DoD schools. The Education Amendments Act of 1978 (P.L. 95-561) and further technical amendments (P.L. 98-511, 99-89, and 100-297) mandated major changes in BIA-funded schools. These amendments empowered Indian school boards, provided for local hiring of teachers and staff, and authorized the direct funding of schools. The BIA does not report the number of staff or graduate counts.


How many students were educated in outlying areas?

Five outlying areas participated in the CCD collection: American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Marianas, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. Puerto Rico educated 604,177 public school students and has more students than 24 states (table 1). The other four outlying areas were much smaller, with a combined total of just 77,148 students in the 2001-02 school year. Student/teacher ratios ranged from 14.1 students per teacher (Puerto Rico) to 20.2 (Northern Marianas), exhibiting a similar range as the 50 states and the District of Columbia (table 2). No outlying area had more than 2.0 percent White, non-Hispanic students in 2001-02 (table 5). Guam and the Northern Marianas reported that the majority of students are Asian/Pacific Islander, American Samoa reported that all students are Asian/Pacific Islander, and Puerto Rico reported that all students are Hispanic. (The Virgin Islands did not report teacher or racial/ethnic data.)

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Technical Notes

The State Nonfiscal Survey of Public Elementary and Secondary Education is an annual state-level collection of the numbers of staff, high school graduates, and students in grades prekindergarten through 12. The data are collected from state education agencies (SEAs), processed and edited by the U.S. Bureau of the Census, and then verified by NCES. The State Nonfiscal Survey of Public Elementary and Secondary Education is part of the Common Core of Data collection.

Staff counts. All staff counts (including teachers) are in full-time equivalency units. This is the amount of time required to perform an assignment stated as a proportion of a full-time position. It is computed by dividing the amount of time employed by the time normally required for a full time position. All states and outlying areas provided data for this survey. However, state agencies vary in their data collection and reporting systems, with resulting variations across states. Several states collapsed two or more categories of staff into one. In these cases, NCES disaggregated this number by distributing the reported amount to the several categories based on the average distribution of these staff in reporting states.

Imputation of data items. Data for prekindergarten students and staff that were missing and not reported elsewhere by the states were imputed. These items are noted as "imputed" in the data tables. The method used for imputing all variables other than prekindergarten students was to: (a) create a subset of states reporting the item in question; (b) calculate the ratio of the missing item to total student membership for each state in the subset; (c) calculate the average ratio of the item to total student membership for the subset; (d) multiply the total student membership of the state with the missing item by the average ratio; (e) substitute the imputed estimate for the missing item and then recompute the subtotals and totals. Missing prekindergarten student counts were imputed by first calculating an average ratio of prekindergarten students to total students minus prekindergarten students for reporting states, and then by following steps (d) and (e) above. Imputations on all states missing a specific data item are done at one time, i.e., imputed values are not used in the imputation of another value. Imputation is only done on the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Totals and subtotals are noted in the tables when one or more items included in the total are imputed or adjusted.

High school completers. NCES made no adjustments or imputations to the data for high school diploma, high school equivalency, or other high school completion. Not applicable was accepted as a valid response for other high school completers for the 2000-01 school year.

The type of high school completions available to students varies by state policies. For example, in some states the only type of completion available is a regular diploma, while in other states, there are a variety of completion types available from regular diploma to a "seat time" certificate. For this reason, caution should be used in comparing state totals in this category.

Virgin Islands. The Virgin Islands reported only student totals for the 2001-02 school year. Therefore, most tables show data missing for the Virgin Islands.


Definitions

Administrative Support Staff: This category consists of staff members who provide direct support to local education agency and school administrators. This includes secretarial and other clerical staff, and persons whose activities are concerned with support of the teaching and administrative duties of the office of the principal or department chairpersons, or central office administrators.

Diploma Recipients: These are those graduates who received diplomas during the previous school year and subsequent summer school. A diploma recognizes that the recipient has successfully completed a state's prescribed course of studies at the secondary school level.

Elementary/Secondary Teachers: States report teachers in these categories. Elementary/secondary categories do not reflect the same grades in all states.

High School Equivalency Recipients: These are individuals age 19 or younger (except in Minnesota where they are age 20 or younger) who received a high school equivalency certificate during the previous school year or subsequent summer. This is a formal document certifying that an individual met the state requirements for high school graduation equivalency by obtaining satisfactory scores on an approved examination, and met other performance requirements (if any) set by a state education agency or other appropriate body.

Membership Count: This comprises the total student enrollment on October 1 (or the closest school day to October 1) for all grade levels (including prekindergarten and kindergarten) and ungraded pupils. Membership includes students both present and absent on the measurement day.

Other High School Completers: These are individuals who received certificates of attendance, or other certificates of completion, in lieu of diplomas during the previous school year and subsequent summer school.

Prekindergarten: This is a group or class that is part of a public school program, and is taught during the year or years preceding kindergarten.

Student/Other Support Staff: This category consists of library and media support staff, professional and supervisory staff (e.g., school psychologists, social workers, attendance officers) providing non-instructional services to students, and support services staff not reported in other categories, (e.g., data processing, health, building and equipment maintenance, bus drivers, security, and food service workers). It combines the categories of library/media support staff, student support services staff, and other support staff that are reported on the Common Core of Data surveys.

Teachers of Ungraded Classes: This category includes teachers of classes or programs without standard grade designation.

Ungraded Students: These are students who are assigned to programs or classes without standard grade designation. States are requested to report teachers of ungraded classes even if all students are assigned a grade level of record (for example, in Florida). In many states ungraded students are special education students.


Acknowledgments

Thanks are due to Dell Gray from the Census Bureau for the creation and production of the tables. Special thanks as always go to Lee Hoffman and Tai Phan who provided data and editorial support for this report. Thanks also to Susan Baldridge from Pinkerton Computer Consultants, who did the figures and report formatting.

The author gratefully acknowledges the comments and suggestions of the reviewers. Reviewers from outside the Department of Education include Ben Justesen, GED Testing Service; Randy Raphael, Utah Department of Education; and Karen Waugh, Kentucky Department of Education. Reviewers from the Department of Education include Anne Sweet, Institute of Education Sciences and Claudette Kaba, Office of Civil Rights. Thanks to Steve Broughman, Charlene Hoffman, Gail Mulligan, Jan Plotczyk, and Bruce Taylor from NCES, for their reviews.

Copies of this report and other Common Core of Data (CCD) products are on the CCD website at http://nces.ed.gov/ccd.

Content Contact:
Lee Hoffman
(202) 502-7356
Lee.Hoffman@ed.gov

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Footnotes

1The United State totals included in this report do not include the outlying areas, DoD or BIA schools.
2Grade-level counts do not sum to 47.7 million because of rounding.
3Ungraded students are students assigned to a class or program that does not have standard grade designations.
4Percentages for categories shown in figure 3 may not sum to total because of rounding.
5Based on the 47.4 million students with reported racial/ethnic data (table 4).

 


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