National Center for Education Statistics
June 2002

The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) has just published this year's edition of one of its most valuable (and bulkiest!) reports, the annual "Condition of Education" volume. "Mixed results" is how the Education Department characterizes its major findings regarding education performance in the U.S. Much other ground is covered in the 335-page report's 44 indicators, six major sections and two special analyses. One of the latter is especially interesting: a statistical portrait of private schools. Though limited by the fact that it only subdivides the complex private-school universe into Catholic, "other religious" and nonsectarian, some of the data are revealing, particularly the differences in public-private school teachers' sense of their influence over key school policies and practices. There's also a bit of data (for the first time, to my knowledge) on charter schools. This is a volume that wants to sit on the desk of every serious education analyst. You can order a hard copy by calling (877)-4ED-PUBS but it's faster to download one from

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