Characteristics of Public, Private, and Bureau of Indian Education Elementary and Secondary School Principals in the United States:
NCES 2009-323
June 2009

Appendix D. Description of Variables

The variables that are included in this report are listed in table D-1. Those with variable names that begin with "A" and are followed by four digits are survey variables that come from items on the principal questionnaires. For survey variables, the numeric part of the variable name can be found in the questionnaires to the left of the corresponding question. The variables without the letter plus four digit names are "created variables," meaning they were created using survey variables, frame variables (variables taken from the sampling frame), other created variables, or a combination of these. They are frequently used in the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) publications and have been added to the data files to facilitate data analysis. The definitions for the created variables follow table D-1.

Charter school identifier (CHARFLAG): A flag variable that identifies charter schools. 1 = School is a public charter school, 2 = School is a traditional public school. A charter school is a public school that, in accordance with an enabling state statute, has been granted a charter exempting it from selected state or local rules and regulation. CHARFLAG is based on S0230 from the public school and BIE school data files.

Percentage of students in school approved for the National School Lunch Program (NSLAPP_S): Taken from the public, private, and BIE school data files, NSLAPP_S is a continuous variable created by dividing the number of students approved for free or reduced-price lunches (S0217) by the total number of K–12 grade students enrolled (S0047) among schools that participated in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) (S0215=1). Schools that did not participate in the NSLP have valid skip values. For this report, NSLAPP_S is recoded as a categorical variable describing the proportion of students approved for free or reduced price lunches.

Principal's age (AGE_P): A variable based on respondents' reported year of birth. AGE_P is a continuous variable that was created by subtracting the principals' reported years of birth (A0248) from the year of data collection (2007).

Principal's race/ethnicity (RACETH_P): A variable based on respondents' reported race and ethnicity (A0241–A0246). The 2007–08 SASS allowed respondents to mark more than one racial category. Recoded into four categories for this report: Hispanic, regardless of race; White, non-Hispanic; Black, non-Hispanic; and Other. The category "Other" includes American Indian/Alaska Native, non-Hispanic; Asian, non-Hispanic; Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, non-Hispanic; or More than one race, non- Hispanic.

Student enrollment (SCHSIZE): Taken from the public, private, and BIE school data files, SCHSIZE is a continuous variable based on the number of K–12 and ungraded students enrolled in a respondent's school (S0047). For this report, SCHSIZE was recoded into six categories for public schools and five categories for private schools.

Three-category private school typology (RELIG): Taken from the private school data file, RELIG is a three-category variable based on the variables that identify the religious or nonreligious orientation of a private school (S0440–S0441): Catholic, Other religious, or Nonsectarian.

Three-category school level (SCHLEVEL): Taken from the public, private, and BIE school data files, SCHLEVEL is a three-category variable based on grades reported by the school: Elementary, secondary, and combined. Elementary schools are those with any of grades K–6 and none of grades 9–12. Secondary schools have any of grades 7–12 and none of grades K–6. Combined schools are those schools with grade levels in both elementary and secondary grade levels, or with all students in ungraded classrooms.

Urban-centric school locale code (URBANS12): Taken from the public, private, and BIE school data files, URBANS12 is a created variable collapsed from the 12 category urban-centric school locale code (SCLOP_07) which was assigned using the 2000 Decennial Census data and recoded into four categories: city, suburban, town, and rural.