Category Archives: Education

Public Elementary-Secondary Education Finance Data

Source: U.S. Census Bureau, June 2010

Education finance data include revenues, expenditures, debt, and assets (cash and security holdings) of elementary and secondary public school systems. Statistics cover school systems in all states, and include the District of Columbia. Data are available in viewable tables and downloadable files.

Viewable Data:
* Public Education Finances Report

Downloadable Data:
* State-level Tables – State-level tables containing selected revenue, expenditure, debt, and asset (cash and securities) data items available in Excel format.

* Individual Unit Tables – Individual unit tables containing data for selected revenue, expenditure, and debt data items for all school systems. Excel, .txt

* All Data Items – Files containing data for all items on the F-33 survey form, as well as unit identifiers, descriptive variables, and summary data items. Each file contains data for all school systems. Excel, .txt

* Data Item Flags – Beginning with fiscal year 1999, the F-33 school system finance files include data item flags to indicate whether a data item was reported by the state education agency or adjusted by the Census Bureau. Excel, .txt

ARRA Funds and State Budget Gaps

Source: Jennifer Cohen, New America Foundation, Ed Money Watch, June 22, 2010

Congress Passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 almost a year and a half ago, providing nearly $50 billion for education programs like Title I, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, and Pell Grants. Additionally, the law included $48.6 billion for the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund, a new program meant to help states shore up education budget shortfalls. Since then, state budget shortfalls have continued to grow, causing lawmakers and interest groups to call for additional money to help support state education funding. But little discussion has focused on how much of the ARRA funds first made available to states in 2009 have actually been dispersed on a state by state basis. As would be expected, states with the highest expected budget gaps, for the most part, have dispersed the highest percentage of their ARRA funds. Similarly, some states with the smallest gaps have dispersed less of their ARRA funds. And of course, there are some notable exceptions to both of these trends.

Embedded Librarians

Source: Inside Higher Ed, June 9, 2010

…The library will be “recycling” much of its print collection, and storing other books offsite; faculty and students will be able to send away for the hard copies via snail mail — like Netflix.

The model Roderer and her staff are pursuing is distributed not only in the sense that every researcher’s computer can access the library’s website and its vaults of electronic journal articles and e-books, but in that library personnel are embedded in various departments to work with researchers on their own turf. These staffers are no longer called librarians; they are “informationists.” (Roderer did not invent the term, but she prefers it to “librarian,” which she says evokes envoys from a faraway building rather than information experts whose skills are applicable anywhere.) …

…Different sorts of libraries serve different sorts of patrons, and for that reason, Schonfeld cautions against holding up the Welch as an example that can be replicated across many institutions. “Any library specialized around a certain field or discipline has the increased flexibility to serve the needs of that field only,” he says, “whereas a general library has a broader constituency that it has to balance its resources across.”

Governors’ Pre-K Budgets at a Glance

Source: Pre-K Now, 2010

* Governors propose a slight increase to state pre-k investments. Should these budgets pass, state early education funding would rise by $8.2 million.
* Nine governors increase pre-k investments. These proposals would increase funding for early learning in these states by a total of $78.5 million.
* Three other states and the District of Columbia anticipate an increase for pre-k through their school funding formulas. In nine states and the District, early education budgets are supported through school funding formulas and grow with enrollment. The other six states do not yet have projections for FY11.
* Ten governors propose to flat fund pre-k. These proposals maintain funding for early learning in these states at FY10 levels and include Alaska and Rhode Island, which both started new programs in FY10.
* Twelve governors are proposing to decrease pre-k funding. In these states, early learning investments would decline by a total of $100.6 million.
* Ten states provide no state-funded pre-k.

The State of Preschool 2009

Source: W. Steven Barnett, Dale J. Epstein, Allison H. Friedman, Rachel Sansanelli, Jason T. Hustedt, National Institute for Early Education Research, May 2010

From the summary:
The 2009 State Preschool Yearbook is the seventh in a series of annual reports profiling state-funded prekindergarten programs in the United States. This latest Yearbook presents data on state-funded prekindergarten during the 2008-2009 school year. The first report in this series focused on programs for the 2001-2002 school year and established a baseline against which we may now measure progress over eight years. Tracking these trends is essential, since changes in states’ policies on preschool education will influence how successfully America’s next generation will compete in the knowledge economy.
See also:
Executive Summary
Table of Contents
State Data
Interactive Database
Charts

Related:
2009 Snapshot of Preschool Programs, State by State, Shows Losses and Gains
Source: Lisa Guernsey, New America Foundation,, Early Ed Watch, May 5, 2010

Financing Special Education: State Funding Formulas

Source: Eileen Ahearn, Project Forum, April 2010

The cost of educating students with disabilities and how to fund their services have been the subject of a number of studies since 1982 that were conducted by the National Association of State Directors of Special Education (NASDSE) and/or projects conducted by the American Institutes for Research’s (AIR) Center for Special Education Finance (CSEF). CSEF was funded by the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP), U.S. Department of Education, from 1992 to 2004.

This study is an update of the 1999-2000 CSEF survey of state special education funding formulas. Current information on this topic was gathered through a survey of state special education directors conducted by Project Forum at NASDSE in conjunction with Tom Parrish and Jenifer Harr-Robins of AIR. The current survey and this document address only mechanisms for distributing state dollars to local districts under state law and policy. Project Forum at NASDSE completed this document as part of its cooperative agreement with OSEP.

Projection of National Education Job Cuts for the 2010-11 School Year

Source: American Association of School Administrators, May 4, 2010

From the press release:
School administrators across the nation are faced with the possible reality of eliminating an unprecedented number of teaching jobs for the 2010-11 school year, according to a new snapshot survey of school superintendents released today by the American Association of School Administrators. School districts face a one-two punch of a tight economic environment at the state and local levels and the end of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act dollars, which were instrumental in saving jobs in 2009.

AASA administered the new study, Projection of National Education Job Cuts for the 2010-11 School Year, to document state-by-state the prospect of personnel cuts for the coming 2010-11 school year. The new survey was in part triggered by AASA’s most recent economic impact survey, Cliff Hanger: How America’s Public Schools Continue to Feel the Impact of the Economic Downturn, which found that students and school systems across the nation are facing serious challenges as a result of the economic downturn, including the prospect of job cuts.

Reconciling the Public Employee Speech Doctrine and Academic Speech After Garcetti v. Ceballos

Source: Darryn Cathryn Beckstrom Published in Minnesota Law Review, Volume 94 No. 4, April 2010

From the abstract:
In 2006, the Supreme Court held in Garcetti v. Ceballos that public employees are not entitled to First Amendment protection for speech arising from their official duties. The Court declined to address whether Garcetti’s holding applied to academic speech, and consequently, lower courts are unclear about whether academics employed by public universities are entitled to First Amendment protection for speech arising from their official duties. This Note argues that given the principle of academic freedom and the purpose of the modern public university, applying the public employee speech doctrine to academic speech is inappropriate because a public university is more similar to a forum for the dissemination of ideas than a traditional public employer, which the government created for the purposes of disseminating a coherent government message. This Note proposes using the public forum doctrine to regulate academic speech instead of the public employee speech doctrine. Using this doctrine would balance the interests of the public university in regulating academic speech and academics’ free speech rights. This approach would also uphold the principle of academic freedom, and a public forum approach is more consistent with First Amendment jurisprudence.

Podcast: An Inside Look at the Head Start Review Process

Source: Lisa Guernsey, New America Foundation, April 19, 2010

From the summary:
Every three years, every Head Start program in the country must undergo a top-to-bottom review from federal monitors in regional Head Start offices who examine files, observe classrooms and interview parents. The process, known as the triennial review, typically takes a week and can be a nerve-wracking moment for grantees who worry whether they will be deemed “out of compliance” with federal regulations.

For this podcast, we talked with Karen Hughes, president and chief executive officer of The Campagna Center, a non-profit organization in Alexandria, Va., that runs the city’s Head Start and Early Head Start programs. Last year, Hughes invited Early Ed Watch to witness her organization go through its review — a week that showed us just how many regulations these programs must observe and document on a daily basis. We thought our listeners could learn from Hughes as well as she talks about why these reviews matter for quality control and what they mean to Head Start programs.