Sunday, May 02, 2010

Demographics by state a generation down the road

Our children are our future, right? So we'd best have an idea of who they are. The 2009 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) scores are out, and the companion site is laden with worthwhile data.

In the US, 12% of school age children are enrolled in private schools, so NAEP does not capture them. It's difficult to find a demographic breakdown of private school students at the national level, but using 2005-2006 data from the National Center for Educational Statistics, I calculate it to be 75.5% white, 9.5% black, 9.2% Hispanic, and 5.8% some other race (unless otherwise noted, "non-Hispanic" should be assumed to describe each category other than Hispanic). At the national level, public schools are 55.8% white, 17.0% black, 21.1% Hispanic, 4.8% Asian, and 1.2% Native American (2007 data). Thus just looking at public education stats slightly shrinks the size of the white slice of the Millenials pie, while correspondingly increasing the non-white share.

The following table presages the demographics of the future by showing racial percentages of the public school student body (8th grade) at the state level, ordered by the most important indicator of social failure (no, bigot, not low test scores, by the percentage of the student body that is white!):

West Virginia93.
New Hampshire92.
North Dakota86.
South Dakota83.
Rhode Island69.98.918.33.10.7
North Carolina56.829.
New Jersey54.917.419.48.10.2
South Carolina53.739.
New York51.619.521.07.40.5
New Mexico29.62.655.61.410.9
District of Columbia5.483.

("Asian" includes Pacific Islanders; "NatAm" = Native American)

Clearly Vermont, like neighboring New Hampshire, will continue to be one of the worst places in the country to live for decades to come, while California and Nevada will continue to get better and better!

Excluding DC and Hawaii, New Mexico is the only state in the US where whites currently do not consitute a majority. In a generation, several other states concentrated in the Southwest and South will follow suit.

According to Bill Clinton, this will be "good for America". I'm skeptical. But that's not the purpose of the post--relaying the data is.


silly girl said...

NAEP is administered to a selected group of private schools.

Council of American Private Education also has some stats

For some real fun contrast the strangely opposite findings of the the University of Illinois on math achievement.

Anonymous said...

From the 2000 census report:

"How many students attend private schools?
In April 2000, 5.2 million first- through-twelfth graders attended private schools, or 10.4 percent of students in those grades. Although the proportion of students in private school increased only modestly from the 1990 level (9.8 percent), the number of students in these schools soared, from 4.2 million to 5.2 million, a 24 percent increase."

Footnote 5, "Home-schooled children are con- sidered enrolled in school"

So, the predominantly white million students at home were not counted in 2000? What about in 2010?

Basically, if the census finds private school attendance is growing as a percentage of students even without counting home schooled students, then what percent of white students are going to be in public if white students fall as a percentage of all students and the proportion of whites who don't attend public school increases? Obviously states that are almost all white will have plenty of white students in public schools but those at the bottom of the list?

Some have noticed that certain districts and neighborhoods have very high white/Asian percentages despite many minorities in nearby areas and seek to "remedy" the situation.

Anonymous said...

Okay, I misread footnote 5. Sorry.

C7 said...

You're skeptical that it will be good for America? care to clarify?

Anonymous said...


Contrary to popular ignorance, diversity is not a strength. Repeat, NOT A STRENGTH. Don't believe everything you hear in the media.

You must read up on W.D. Hamilton about human nature and kin selection, xenophobia, and tribal alliances and, while your at it, check out Bowling Alone by Robert Putnam, a tome about how a diverse hunkered-down America has lost its social capital and how its people are simply not engaged in their communities any longer.

Racial tensions in this country are palpable and will only get worse as the Great Empire declines into a balkanized state of warring tribes. And the call for tolerance continues. Tolerance? Isn't that simply learning how to shut up about something that is injurious or irritating? Can you tolerate the heat?


C7 said...

C-4? Are you Audacious Epigone?

Anonymous said...


No, I'm not nearly as smart, educated, well read or as articulate as The Audacious Epigone.


Audacious Epigone said...

Silly Girl,

Thanks for those. When I estimated average state IQ scores, the private school mean was about 12 test points higher on mathematics and reading than public schools. That has remained pretty consistent in recent history.

Interesting that while Catholic schools have relatively declined among all private educational institutions, the share of "conservative Christian" schools has grown by about 50% in less than 20 years.

Funny how that study contradicts what NAEP shows on its own website. The phrase "controlling for demographic variables" is nebulous though, and leaves a lot of room to roam.


In other words, will private schools become roughly synonymous with privileged white schools as they are now in the heart of many metro areas?


To put it boorishly, the more Mexican the Southwest becomes, the more the Southwest will come to resemble Mexico. Wealth inequality, poverty, and corruption will increase. Average levels of educational attainment will fall. Fulsome gang activity will crop up in places that had not previously experienced it before. From that comes graffiti, petty theft, places you can't take your family out to eat to, etc.

California used to have a positive net in-country migration rate. For the last decade, more Americans have been leaving the place than moving into it. California now consistently rounds out the bottom of the NAEP rankings in everything and the state is in enormous fiscal trouble. If California is the US' future, will that future be bright? Or would I be better off in New Hampshire?

Black Sea said...

This is a very useful table for those thinking about relocating, particularly those with kids. Big Sky Country just keeps looking better and better.

Chris said...

C7, did you happen to see this list of the most and least economically-stressed counties in the country yesterday? I didn't crunch the numbers, but there is obviously a very striking correlation between economic stress and immigrant-density, as well as between economic stress and non-whiteness.

As a lifelong resident of the state (california) that boasts 12 of the top 20 most stressed counties, I'll tell you it's not a surprise. You replace a people, you replace the society they gave rise to. That's what's happening. I suppose if you like Mexican food, then everything is just terrific.

C7 said...

AE - Interesting point about the net in-country migration. I enjoy reading your analysis of actual data and I'm looking forward to what you do with the 2010 census.

Chris, I take your point that there's a correlation, but as I'm sure you're aware, correlation and causation are not the same. Your first point, that there's a strong correlation between immigrant density and stress means more to me than your second, non-whiteness and stress. For one, as I'm sure you're all aware, when unskilled labor enters the country illegally, we're likely not getting the best and brightest from their countries of origin. It's important to consider who we're getting of what color rather than seeing color or culture alone, and I think AE would agree. For another, your comment seems to take for granted the cultural homogeneity of white people which is a relatively recent thing in this country. Once upon a time, Italians and Portuguese were not considered white people, and Irish people and Jews were almost subhuman. Also, consider that it is a myth that the United States was ever, in its 403 year history, a purely white country. What society did British people give rise to without Indians or Blacks? Without Asians? Did the society they gave rise to vanish when British Isles-origin whites were outnumbered by others? Consider further that Asian Americans on average have a higher household income than White Americans. It is far too simplistic to speak of the replacement of "a people" being the only explanation.

The fact is we're taking on poor immigrants faster than they're assimilating and faster than our economy can absorb them. When we adjust the rate at which we take on immigrants and the "economic quality" (education, skills, money) of the immigrants we take on, we'll see reversal of the trend you're describing. Not adjustment of their race.

KingM said...

You replace a people, you replace the society they gave rise to. That's what's happening. I suppose if you like Mexican food, then everything is just terrific.

I love Mexico, I love Mexican food, I speak Spanish, and I like Mexicans.

But I think only one Mexico in the world is enough.

Anonymous said...

The numbers are not as grim as they seem. Take Nevada:

White: 43.1
Black: 11.0
Hispanic: 36.4
Asian: 7.9
Native American: 1.5

Add to the white score the Asians and you're at 51%. Roughly half of all Hispanics consider themselves white. This is probably exaggerating their actual whiteness, but this doesn't necessarily matter as far as their future assimilation is concerned. Add this half and you're at almost 70%. Now, maybe a quarter of the remaining minorities are likely to marry a white person and perhaps half of them will consider themselves more white than not. Aren't you still, after a generation, at roughly 75% who are white, consider themselves white, or Asian?

And this is Nevada, one of the worst-case scenarios. If you were to halt unfettered immigration in the near term, there is still hope for another round of assimilation, similar to what happened 90 years ago.

If you don't drastically slow immigration, well, of course we'll f****d. But we aren't yet.

Anonymous said...

Average Amerindian IQ- 87

Average Mestiso IQ - 93

Average US IQ - 98 (and dropping)

Average East Asian IQ- 104

What does that portend for the future?


silly girl said...

NAEP 2009 8th grade Math averaged scale scores

top white scores

MA 305
MD 303
NJ 302
TX 301

top hispanic scores

DoD 281
DE 278
MT 278
TX 277

Texas spends half as much on education per student per year as Massachusetts and New Jersey.

Can you say diminishing returns?

Oh, and what was all that hooplah about the Texas State Board of Education?

Looks like at least 40 some odd states could learn something about cost/benefit from Texas.

Audacious Epigone said...


I'm generally supportive of merit immigration. The EB-5 visa program is a great example of how we could potentially be getting the global cream of the crop, virtually guaranteeing that on net legal immigrants increase the per capita material standard of living. The more numerically restrictive we want to be, the higher we raise the bar. Why not leverage the US' high net migration rate to the advantage of those already living here?

I'm still sympathetic to the ethnic and cultural arguments as well, though, because as Putnam's research validates, civics and homogeneity seem to go together.

Silly girl,

I'm going to create an updated listing of IQ estimates by state based 8th grade NAEP scores for 2009. I did it using 2005 numbers and a few months later Michael McDaniel of VCU published a research paper using NAEP to do the same. Our results were very similar (his correlated slightly more strongly with other good-faith estimates of average state IQ made in the past).

What I wonder is how consistent the results are four years later--if they correlate strongly to 2005, I think we've found an enormously useful proxy for IQ.

Anonymous said...

What we also need to look at is the fact that the single largest contribution to immigration annually is not job-related or talent-related but simply related; that is, the single largest source of immigrants to the US annually is family reunification.

If Jose and Maria are allowed to bring in their siblings and Jose and Maria dropped out of school after the 6th grade, what is the likelihood that their siblings are brain surgeons instead of 6th grade drop-outs? Remember, Jose and Maria don't have to prove that the US needs their siblings' skills. That they are related is enough.

Remember this when you think about the proposal in the Senate to legalize at least 11 million and more likely 20 million illegal aliens.


Anonymous said...

"If you were to halt unfettered immigration in the near term, there is still hope for another round of assimilation, similar to what happened 90 years ago."

This is how I feel. Damage has been done, but we can recover as long as we stop the bleeding soon. The problem is that we are still propping ourselves up with debt, oil, and cheap Third World labor to stave off the pain that would lead us to action.

Anonymous said...

"cheap Third World labor to stave off the pain that would lead us to action."

Third world folks who come here to labor are not "cheap". The get free health care and education for their kids. The cost of which is greater than their gross pay.