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Appendix B: Glossary

The statistics, row, and column variables used in analyses for this First Look report are described below. The names of variables that are included in the data file and were used to produce estimates for this report appear in capital letters. In some cases, the variables have been used in the exact format in which they appear on the data file. In other cases, variables available on the data file have been modified, for instance, when the categories have been combined to create a smaller number of categories. Such collapsing of categories is noted in the descriptions. In other cases, new measures have been created specifically for this report by combining information from two or more variables in the data file. In these instances, the variables used to create the new measure are noted. Items with missing data were imputed.

Row Variables

School Characteristics

School Type: School type is created by classifying the school currently attended by the student as either public or private using the variables S12TYPE and S12PBPV. S12TYPE and S12PBPV are derived from parent-reported information linked to data from the Common Core of Data (CCD) or Private School Universe Survey (PSS) data files. Schools that are public are further classified using the variables S12CHART, S12MAGN, and SCHOICEX. S12CHART and S12MAGN are variables derived from the CCD that are used to determine whether the school is
a charter or magnet school. SCHOICEX is a parent-reported variable asking whether the school the child attends is the child's regularly assigned school. Schools that are private are also classified using the variable S12TYPE as being religious or nonreligious.

The values follow:

1 = Public, assigned
2 = Public, chosen
3 = Private, religious
4 = Private, nonreligious

School Size: The variable S12NUMST classifies the student's school on the basis of the number of students currently enrolled.
The values follow:

1 = Under 300
2 = 300–599
3 = 600–999
4 = 1,000–2,499
5 = 2,500 or more
-1 = Homeschooled student
-2 = Inapplicable in the CCD universe file
-9 = Data are missing for school

For the analyses, categories 4 and 5 are collapsed to create a category “1,000 or more.”

Student Characteristics

Locale of Student's Household: ZIPLOCL is a household location variable that classifies the ZIP code into a set of community types. This variable was derived using the respondent's ZIP code and Census data.

The values for ZIPLOCL follow:

1 = City - Large
2 = City - Midsize
3 = City - Small
4 = Suburb - Large
5 = Suburb - Midsize
6 = Suburb - Small
7 = Town - Fringe
8 = Town - Distant
9 = Town - Remote
10 = Rural - Fringe
11 = Rural - Distant
12 = Rural - Remote

For the analyses, the first three categories from ZIPLOCL are combined to form the “City” category. Other categories from ZIPLOCL are combined to form the categories “Suburban” (categories 4, 5, and 6), “Town” (categories 7, 8, and 9), and “Rural” (10, 11, and 12). For definitions of these 12 categories of community type,
see http://nces.ed.gov/pubs2007/ruraled/exhibit_a.asp (Provasnik et al. 2007).

Student's Sex: The data for the variable CSEX are taken directly from responses to the screener interview.

Student's Race/Ethnicity: RACEETH2 indicates the race and ethnicity of the sampled student. This variable is used in this report in the same format in which it appears on the data file and is derived from information in CHISPAN, CWHITE, CBLACK, CAMIND, CASIAN, and CPACI. If values are missing for these variables, they are imputed. If students are reported to be Asian and reported to be Pacific Islander, and are not Hispanic, they are included in the “Asian or Pacific Islander, non-Hispanic” category.

The values of RACEETH2 follow:

1 = White, non-Hispanic
2 = Black, non-Hispanic
3 = Hispanic
4 = Asian or Pacific Islander, non-Hispanic
5 = All other races and multiple races, non-Hispanic

Student's Grade Level: ALLGRADEX, a derived variable available in the data file, indicates the grade in which the student is currently enrolled or provides the student's grade equivalent. The values of ALLGRADEX are kindergarten through grade 12. For this report, grades are collapsed into the following categories: Kindergarten–2, 3–5, 6–8, and 9–12.

Family Characteristics

Parents' Highest Education Level: PARGRADEX indicates the highest level of education for the subject child's parents or nonparent guardians who reside in the household. This measure, which is used in this report in the same format in which it appears on the data file, is derived from PAR1EDUC and PAR2EDUC.

The values for PARGRADEX follow:
1 = Less than high school credential
2 = High school graduate or equivalent
3 = Vocational/technical education after high school or some college
4 = College graduate
5 = Graduate or professional school

Parents' Language at Home: LANGUAGEX indicates the knowledge and/or use of English by the parent(s)/guardian(s) in the household. LANGUAGEX is used in this report in the same format in which it appears on the data file and is created using the variables P1FRLNG, P1SPEAK, P2GUARD, P2FRLNG, and P2SPEAK.

The values for LANGUAGEX follow:

1 = Both/only parent(s) learned English first or currently speak(s) English in the home
2 = One of two parents learned English first or currently speaks English in the home
3 = No parent learned English first and both/only parent(s) currently speak(s) a non- English language in the home

Poverty Status: This indicates whether a sample student resided in a household categorized as poor or nonpoor. NHES provides an approximate measure of poverty. The income variable used to establish whether a child resided in a household categorized as poor or nonpoor is TTLHHINC, which lists possible income ranges (e.g., $0 to $10,000, $10,001 to 20,000, $20,001 to $30,000, up to over $150,001). If data for TTLHHINC are missing, they are imputed. Using
the income ranges and household size (HHTOTAL), poverty thresholds are then used to establish whether a child resided in a household categorized as poor or nonpoor. Thresholds to define poverty are based on weighted averages from 2011 Census poverty thresholds. A household is considered poor if a household of a particular size matches the income categories shown in exhibit B-1. Otherwise, the household is considered to be nonpoor.

Exhibit B-1. Poverty definition for Parent and Family Involvement in Education (PFI) analyses, by household size: 2012
Household size (HHTOTAL)1 Income catagories in variable TTLHHINC
2 Less than or equal to $10,000 (TTLHHINC = 1)
3 Less than or equal to $20,000 (TTLHHINC = 1, 2)
4 Less than or equal to $20,000 (TTLHHINC = 1, 2)
5 Less than or equal to $30,000 (TTLHHINC = 1, 2, 3)
6 Less than or equal to $30,000 (TTLHHINC = 1, 2, 3)
7 Less than or equal to $40,000 (TTLHHINC = 1, 2, 3, 4)
8 Less than or equal to $40,000 (TTLHHINC = 1, 2, 3, 4)

Column Variables

Table 1 – Method by which school communicated with parents
Parents were asked whether or not their children's teachers or school sent them notes or e-mail about their children (FSNOTESX); whether the school sent newsletters, memos, e-mail, or notices addressed to all parents (FSMEMOSX); and whether they were called on the phone (FSPHONCHX).

Table 2 – Parental participation in school activities
Parents were asked whether or not they or anyone else in their household had done the following things since the beginning of the school year: attended a general school meeting such as an open house or a back-to-school night (FSMTNG); attended a meeting of the parent-teacher organization or association (FSPTMTNG); went to a regularly scheduled parent-teacher conference with their child's teacher (FSATCNFN); attended a school or class event such as a play, dance, sports event, or science fair because of the child (FSSPORTX); served as a volunteer in the child's classroom or elsewhere in the school (FSVOL); participated in fundraising for the school (FSFUNDRS); served on a school committee (FSCOMMTE); and met with a guidance counselor in person (FSCOUNSLR). For this report, attending a general school meeting or attending a parent-teacher organization or association meeting are combined so that the estimates reported indicate the percentages of students whose parents reported attendance at either of these types of meetings since the beginning of the school year. Similarly, volunteering and serving on a school committee are combined so that the estimate reported indicates the percentage of parents who volunteered or served on a committee.

Table 3 – Parental satisfaction with school characteristics and amount of homework
Parents were asked to rate how satisfied they were with the school their child attends this year (FCSCHOOL). The choices were “very satisfied,” “somewhat satisfied,” “somewhat dissatisfied,” and “very dissatisfied.” Table 3 reports the percentage of parents who were “very satisfied.” The other items in the table, coded in the same way as FCSCHOOL, are satisfaction with the teachers their child has this year (FCTEACHR), satisfaction with the academic standards of the school (FCSTDS), satisfaction with the order and discipline at the school (FCORDER), and satisfaction with the way the school staff interacts with parents (FCSUPPRT).

Parents who reported that their children did homework outside of school were asked their opinion about the amount of homework their children are assigned (FHAMOUNT). The choices were “The amount is about right,” “It's too much,” or “It's too little.” Table 3 reports the percentage of parents who thought that the amount of homework assigned was “about right.”

Table 4 – Family involvement in homework for students who do homework outside of school
Parents were asked to report how often their children do homework outside of school (FHHOME). The choices were “never,” “less than once a week,” “1 to 2 days a week,” “3 to 4 days a week,” “5 or more days a week,” or “child does not have homework.” The estimates in table 4 indicate the percentage of students who did homework outside of school less than once per week or more (i.e., the percentage of students whose parents reported any response other than “never” or “child does not have homework”).

Parents were asked to report whether there is a place in their home that is set aside for homework (FHPLACE). The choices were “yes,” “no,” and “child does not do homework at home.” For the analysis, the estimates pertain only to students whose parents reported that their children do homework at home.

Parents were asked to report whether or not an adult in the household checks to see that the children's homework is done (FHCHECKX). For the analysis, the estimates for “adult in household checks that homework is done” pertain only to students whose parents reported that their children do homework outside of school.

Table 5 – Parental expectations for student's education after high school
Parents were asked to report how far they expect their child to go in their education (SEFUTUREX). The choices were “to receive less than a high school diploma,” “to graduate from high school,” “to attend a vocational school after high school,” “to attend two or more years of college,” “to finish a four- or five-year college degree,” and “to earn a graduate degree or professional degree beyond a bachelor's.” For the analysis, the estimates for education expectations pertain only to students in grades 6 through 12.

Table 6 – Family participation in non-school-related activities
Parents were asked whether they did the following activities with the child in the past month: visited a library (FOLIBRAYX); visited a bookstore (FOBOOKSTX); went to a play, concert, or other live show (FOCONCRTX); visited an art gallery, a museum, or a historical site (FOMUSEUMX); visited a zoo (FOZOOX); attended an event sponsored by a community religious or ethnic group (FOGROUPX); and attended an athletic or sporting event outside of school in which the child was not a player (FOSPRTEVX). Responses were yes or no.

Table 7 – Number of homeschooled children
Table 7 looks at the percentage distribution and rate of homeschooled students. For the purpose of this table, homeschooled students are ages 5 through 17, are in a grade equivalent of at least kindergarten and not higher than grade 12, and receive instruction at home instead of at a public or private school either all or most of the time. The table excludes students who were enrolled in public or private school more than 25 hours per week and students who were homeschooled only because of temporary illness. The homeschooling rate was calculated using the number of homeschool students in each row variable, divided by the total number of enrolled and homeschooled students within each category.

A special weight was created to account for part-time homeschoolers who appear in the PFI-Enrolled questionnaire. Because of the NHES mail design, it is possible a student's school status changed between the initial household screener and the mailing of the topical survey. It is also possible that the screener respondent and topical respondent were different people and may have reported differently for children or youth in the household. To account for this, a question was asked on the PFI-Enrolled questionnaire to ascertain whether the subject student was homeschooled for some classes. However, follow-up questions about how many hours the child was in school or whether the child had a temporary illness were not asked on the PFI-Enrolled questionnaire. To account for this, cases on the PFI-Enrolled who were reported to be homeschooled for some classes were given a weight that was the inverse of the proportion of students reported on the Homeschool questionnaire to be attending school for more than 25 hours or who were homeschooled because of a temporary illness (.22). This resulted in a weighting factor of .78.

Table 8 – Reasons for homeschooling children
Parents were asked whether or not they chose to homeschool their child to provide religious instruction (HSRELGON); to provide moral instruction (HSMORAL); because of a concern about the school environment such as safety, drugs, or negative peer pressure (HSSAFETYX); because of dissatisfaction with the academic instruction at other schools (HSDISSATX); to provide a nontraditional approach (HSALTX); because the child has special needs that they believed the school could not or would not meet (HSSPCLNDX); because the child has a physical or mental problem that has lasted six months or more (HSDISABLX); or for other reasons beyond those listed (HSOTHERX).

Parents were asked to indicate the most important reason for homeschooling their child (HSMOSTX) based on the list in the previous question. These choices included the variables listed above.

For the purpose of this table, homeschooled students are ages 5 through 17, are in a grade equivalent of at least kindergarten and not higher than grade 12, and receive instruction at home instead of at a public or private school either all or most of the time. The table excludes students who were enrolled in public or private school more than 25 hours per week and students who were homeschooled only because of temporary illness. Temporary illness was not defined for respondents.

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National Center for Education Statistics - http://nces.ed.gov
U.S. Department of Education