Skip Navigation
Racial and Ethnic Classifications Used by Public Schools
NCES: 96092
May 1996

Other Issues Related to the Collection of Data on Race and Ethnicity

Respondents were asked to comment on any additional issues regarding racial and ethnic classifications that they felt were significant for their schools. Of the 926 school personnel who completed questionnaires, about 15 percent provided some written comments.

Many of these comments reiterated some of the information already included elsewhere in the questionnaire. For example, several respondents commented on the need for a multiracial, biracial, or multinational category. Others indicated that they felt it would be important to allow individuals either to mark a category that meets their identity or to let them write in their own specific racial or ethnic designation, with no categories provided. About 10 percent of the comments implied that no changes are warranted. These comments often were from respondents who acknowledged that because of the homogeneity of the population at their particular schools, they were not experiencing any problems with the current standards. Finally, a slightly higher number of comments were from individuals who expressed displeasure with the entire process of collecting data on race and ethnicity and suggested eliminating this system of identifying and categorizing this population characteristic entirely.