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School Expenditures
Charter Schools
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Issue: #486

July 31, 2017  

The Census Information Center of Eastern Oklahoma, a program of the Community Service Council, provides access to data generated from the U.S. Census Bureau. 

More Than Half of School Expenditures Spent on Classroom Instruction
Schools across the nation spent more than 60 percent of day-to-day expenditures on classroom instruction in 2015, according to the U.S. Census Bureau's Public Education Finances: 2015 report released last month.

The report provides figures on revenues, expenditures, debt and assets (cash and security holdings) for the nation's public elementary and secondary school systems. The report, which is released annually, includes detailed statistics on spending - such as instruction, student transportation, salaries and employee benefits - at the national, state and school district levels.

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Alone in the Crowd: The Structure and Spread of Loneliness in a Large Social Network

The discrepancy between an individual's loneliness and the number of connections in a social network is well documented, yet little is known about the placement of loneliness within, or the spread of loneliness through, social networks. In a much-cited 2009 study from the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, researchers used network linkage data from the population-based Framingham Heart Study to trace the topography of loneliness in people's social networks and the path through which loneliness spreads through these networks. 

Results indicated that loneliness occurs in clusters, extends up to three degrees of separation, is disproportionately represented at the periphery of social networks, and spreads through a contagious process. 

The results advance understanding of the broad social forces that drive loneliness and suggest that efforts to reduce loneliness in society may benefit by aggressively targeting the people in the periphery to help repair their social networks and to create a protective barrier against loneliness that can keep the whole network from unraveling.

'A Failed and Damaging Experiment:' NEA Takes on Unaccountable Charter Schools
At its annual meeting in July 2017, the educators of the National Education Association drew a sharp new line between charter schools that have a positive effect on public education and those unaccountable, privately managed charter schools that hurt public schools and students. A new policy statement adopted by the assembly denounces unaccountable charters as a "failed and damaging experiment," and calls for a stop to the proliferation of such schools by supporting state and local efforts to hold charters accountable, to preserve funding for public schools, and to organize charter educators.

The policy statement is the work of a task force convened by NEA President Lily Eskelsen GarcĂ­a in 2016 to respond to educators' growing concern about the unabated growth of the sector. As expansion has picked up pace over the past decade, the original, collaborative vision of charter schools has largely been eclipsed by a competitive model that has empowered reckless disregard for accountability and transparency, at the expense of many of the students they seek to serve.

Until Next Week,

Melanie Poulter
Census Information Center

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