Estimates are available now for the number of students attending US elementary and secondary schools for the fall of 1980. Total K-12: About 46 million, with some 5 million of those attending nonpublic schools. There are those who think the ratio of private to public (1: 9) is too low, but statisticians at the Department of Education stick by their estimates.
The estimated number of teachers (K-12) in fall 1980 was 2,360,000, giving a teacher-student ratio of about 1:20.
Colleges and universities lag behind in their statistics and are now up to fall 1977. It is estimated that in that year some 11,415,000 students were in higher education, with the bulk (some 9 million) attending public institutions.
And what may come as a bit of a surprise is the fact that nearly twice as many students took advanced placement high school courses in 1978 than in 1970. This statistic somehow flies in the face of general belief that the "schools are goin g downhill."