The NCES Education Demographic and Geographic Estimates (EDGE) program designs and develops information resources to help understand the social and spatial context of education in the U.S. It uses data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey to create custom indicators of social, economic, and housing conditions for school-age children and their parents. It also uses spatial data collected by NCES and the Census Bureau to create geographic locale indicators, school point locations, school district boundaries, and other types of data to support spatial analysis.
The ACS Parent tabulation identifies a parent as a person who is either a householder who has a child, the spouse of a householder who has a child, or an identified parent in a subfamily with a child. The child must live in the household with the parent in order for the parent to be identified. In some cases, legitimate parent-child relationships within a household may still go undetected because of insufficient information. For example, if an unmarried partner has a child with the householder, only the householder can be identified as a parent of the child. Such undercounted arrangements may produce a slight bias in the data.
The Parent Tabulation iterates ACS population data based on the school enrollment characteristics of their children. The categories include:
- Total parents of children
- Parents of grade-relevant children
- Parents of grade-relevant children enrolled in school
- Parents of grade-relevant children enrolled in public school
The first distinction is between parents of all children and parents of grade-relevant children. Grade-relevancy identifies children in grades served by a district. Enrollment categories offer additional distinction between parents of children who are enrolled in school and those who are enrolled in public schools.