We will break into groups to brainstorm collaborative story possibilities around four datasets, with the goal of returning to your newsroom and launching into a project. The break-out groups will be:
Atlanta Journal-Constitution's test score data: Disseminated by the AJC team that released the "Cheating our Children" series earlier this year, these data contain the average reading and math test scores for grades 3 through 8 in roughly 69,000 public schools around the country, from approximately 2007 to 2011. The data compare a class's scores between years to help identify unlikely swings in results that could indicate tampering or cheating. The data include statistical test results that measure improbability, generated by the AJC team, for you to use as a guide.
Census Data on Minorities’ Socioeconomic Slide: When it comes to income, poverty, education and homeownership, the gaps between whites and minorities -- particularly, African-Americans and Latinos -- are worse now than they were before the Civil Rights movement. For example, when compared to the college graduation rates of whites, the gap has doubled for African Americans and more than tripled for Latinos in the past five decades. I-News Network in Denver has analyzed data from the U.S. Census back to 1960 for every state in the nation. Each INN member will be able to look at state and regional trends in education (high school and college graduation), income (median household/family), poverty and homeownership.
SBA 7a business loans: The SBA 7a business loans database, obtained by NICAR, contains information about loans guaranteed (but not funded) by the U.S. Small Business Administration going back to 1953. You can investigate business in your community and answer questions such as: Who are getting loans and in what income areas? How many loans have been forgiven? How many businesses have failed despite backing by the SBA?
Federal Contracting Data: Investigative Newsource has merged different federal datasets on minority contractors to determine how often the minority-owned rule is skirted – and where this happens the most. Data experts joined and cleaned up the data and pulled out contracts where half or more was subcontracted to non-minority businesses.