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Introduction

The Common Core of Data (CCD) is an annual collection of public elementary and secondary education data by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) in the Institute of Education Sciences of the U.S. Department of Education. The data presented in this report are selected from the three nonfiscal components of the Common Core of Data (CCD) survey system: the Public Elementary/Secondary School Universe Survey; the Local Education Agency (LEA) Universe Survey; and the State Nonfiscal Survey of Public Elementary/Secondary Education.

This First Look report presents findings on the numbers and types of public elementary and secondary schools and local education agencies and public school student enrollment and staff in the United States and other jurisdictions1 for school year (SY) 2011–12 from the provisional version 1a school universe file, provisional version 1a LEA universe file, and the provisional version 1a state universe file.

The purpose of this First Look report is to introduce new data through the presentation of tables containing descriptive information; therefore, the selected findings chosen for this report demonstrate the range of information available when using data from the CCD nonfiscal survey components. The selected findings do not represent a complete review of all observed differences in the data and are not meant to emphasize any particular issue.

This First Look provides users with an opportunity to access provisional data that have been fully reviewed and edited. State education agencies (SEAs) report data annually for the nonfiscal CCD via the EDFacts collection system. SEAs submit separate files for each of the three nonfiscal survey components (school, LEA and state). For each survey, SEAs submit only aggregate sums of person-level data such as membership or number of teachers. The EDFacts collection opens for each school year beginning in January, with groups of data collected over a schedule throughout the year. The data in this report represent data reported from January 2012 through April 2013. The SY 2011–12 EDFacts collection will remain open to SEAs for revisions and corrections for approximately 3 years after the opening of the initial collection, continuing through the end of 2015. NCES may release additional revisions of the provisional data when necessary to reflect the most recent revisions reported from SEAs. Once the collection for SY 2011–12 closes, NCES will issue a Final version of the nonfiscal survey data files to include any final reported revisions.

In subsequent school years, CCD expects to begin publishing preliminary data in an effort to provide earlier access to the datasets. The preliminary data will be subject to very limited data review and editing. The release of preliminary data will be followed by a later release of provisional data that will serve as an update to the previously released preliminary data, after more extensive review and editing process has been applied to the data.

NCES and its EDFacts partners provide technical guidance and training to SEAs to enable them to use standard definitions for the data items they report. In some cases, SEAs may be unable to report a data item or may not be able to follow the definition exactly. If reported data do not meet NCES data quality standards, NCES may suppress these data or set them to missing. For the State Nonfiscal Survey only, NCES may use values from prior year reporting, other CCD survey variables, or alternate administrative data sources to edit the data or impute for missing data using statistical procedures. Please see Appendix A: Methodology and Technical Notes in this report for a more detailed discussion of the editing and review process.

SEAs from the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands reported SY 2011–12 CCD data through the EDFacts collection system; the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands and Guam reported directly to the CCD survey staff through alternative electronic formats. DoDEA, BIE, and American Samoa did not report nonfiscal data for SY 2011–12. For the school and agency universes, NCES carried over the numbers and statuses of schools and agencies in these jurisdictions from prior year files and coded all the other data items as missing. For the state level universe, NCES carried over the jurisdiction’s directory information from prior year files but coded the other data items as missing.

While tables include data for all of the CCD respondents, "United States" and "reporting states" totals in the tables include only the 50 states and the District of Columbia and exclude data from the BIE, DoDEA, Puerto Rico, or the other jurisdictions of American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, or the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Appendix A: Methodology and Technical Notes provides more information about the survey content and methodology. Appendix B: Common Core of Data Glossary provides definitions for data items found in this report. More information about the CCD surveys and products is available at http://nces.ed.gov/ccd.

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1  The CCD includes the 50 states, the District of Columbia, the Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA), the Bureau of Indian Education (BIE), Puerto Rico and the four other jurisdictions of American Samoa, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. For ease of reading, in this report, the term "state" or "states" refers to these entities.

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