Editor's Note (The View From Here)

Looking to the Future

Eight Years From Now

In early April, the National Center for Education Statistics released their annual Projections of Education Statistics report. They have been releasing these reports since 1964, which makes this the 45th edition. Each report extends the projections by a year. The most recent projections are for 2026, with a starting point of 2014, because that is the last year of actual public school data.

In the fall of 2014, total public and private elementary and secondary school enrollment was 56 million. It is expected to increase by three percent by 2026. The report states that the increases will take place in the South and West (21 of those states by five percent or more), while the Midwest and Northeast, as many as 10 states will experience a decrease of five percent or more by 2026.

An encouraging projection is that expenditures for public elementary and secondary education are expected to increase 19 percent between the 2013-14 and 2026-27 school years. And, expenditures per pupil are expected to increase from their 2014 level of $11,200 by 15 percent in 2026 to $12,900. The report does go on to state that factors such as changes in policy initiatives and a shift in economic growth could affect these projections. Let’s hope these projections come true. You can read the entire report at nces.ed.gov.

Teacher Strikes

Most of us agree that teachers do not receive the pay they deserve. What started out recently as teacher protests about pay has, in most states morphed into something broader, overall education spending. Whether you agree with the teachers, or their methods, the fact that these events have made the issue of education funding a relevant and more prominent issue for national discussion is, in my opinion, a positive development. Elected officials have been given an extraordinary opportunity to discuss changes that would be good for kids, fair to teachers, and have a positive effect on the future.

A reminder, you can follow me on Twitter, @SPM_editor, and you are always welcome to contact me with your thoughts and ideas at jenderle@1105media.com.

This article originally appeared in the May 2018 issue of School Planning & Management.

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