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Current Expenditures for Public Elementary and Secondary Education: School Year 2003-04

NCES 2008-352
July 2006

Appendix B: Definitions

Current expenditures are those for the day-to-day operation of schools. They include expenditures for staff salaries and benefits, supplies and purchased services. Expenditures associated with repaying debts, capital outlays (e.g., purchases of land, school construction and repair, and equipment) are excluded from current expenditures. Programs outside the scope of preschool to grade 12, transfer payments, and expenditures for items lasting more than 1 year (e.g., school buses and computers) are not included in current expenditures.

Instruction expenditures are for activities related to the interaction between teachers and students. Includes salaries and benefits for teachers and teacher aides, textbooks, supplies and purchased services.

Instruction-related expenditures include expenditures for activities that assist with classroom instruction. Includes salaries and benefits for: librarians and library aides, in-service teacher trainers, curriculum development, student assessment, technology (for students but outside the classroom), and supplies and purchased services related to those professions.

Student support services include expenditures for activities related to a student's well-being. Includes salaries and benefits for: nurses, guidance counselors, social workers, speech pathologists, audiologists, attendance officers, and supplies and purchased services related to those professions.

Administration expenditures include expenditures for school and school district administration. This includes the school principal's office, the superintendent and board of education and their immediate staff, and other LEA (local education agency, or school district) staff and services except those listed in the other categories. This includes salaries and benefits for LEA planners/researchers, personnel, fiscal services, warehousing, and other activities of LEAs, along with the supplies and purchased services of these activities.

Operations includes expenditures for the operation and maintenance of schools and school district facilities, and expenditures related to student transportation, food services, and enterprise operations.

Regular school districts are public elementary and/or secondary school districts that provide instruction and other education services and that do not focus primarily on special education or vocational education. Education service agencies are also excluded from this category.

Student membership is the count of students enrolled on or about October 1.