Meetings at the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) help state policymakers with both big picture issues (how will the Affordable Care Act affect your budget) to specific details. Education Sector’s Kris Amundson was at their annual summit this week in Chicago. Here are three important numbers she brought back from the conference.
On state budgets: 6. That’s the number of states that report they feel “optimistic” about their state’s economic outlook for Fiscal 2013. A total of 33 states foresee a “stable” economic outlook, and 11 states say they are concerned. Six is also the number of states that are members of what NCSL calls the “Billionaires’ Club”—states with at least one billion dollars in their Rainy Day fund. Those states are Alaska, Colorado, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, and Texas.
On college-ready grads: 25. Former West Virginia Gov. Bob Wise, now head of the Alliance for Excellent Education, shared these grim statistics. Of the ninth-graders who will enter school over the next few weeks, one in four will not graduate. Four in 10 students of color will never earn a high school diploma. And of those that do persist to graduation, just 25 percent will actually be college ready.
On the Congressional re-elect ballot: 54. That’s the number of Americans who say they would like to vote out every member of Congress, according to pollster Peter Hart. He and pollster Neil Newhouse also offered this insight into the presidential election: If you are a white suburban woman, both campaigns view you as a member of their most desirable voting group. If you are a white suburban woman who lives in one of the 12 swing states that are still in play this election cycle, you might consider disconnecting your phone.