National News Roundup
The number of independent local school districts has declined slightly over the past five years, according to a recent survey by U.S. Bureau of the Census.
The bureau's annual study of statistical trends in state and local governments reported a total of 14,741 independent districts, a decline of 110 from the 1982 total.
There are also 1,500 school systems that are dependent on other agencies, such as city and county governments, for their revenues, the survey showed.
the number of districts reported in a 1962 survey, the bureau noted, and 433 fewer than the 1977 figure. In 1942, according to the report, the nation had nearly 110,000 school districts, many of them with one. room schools.)
Overall, the number of local jurisdictions has increased by about 1.7 percent since
, 1982, the survey found, largely because of tremendous growth in the number of sewer, housing, and other special district govern)% ing units.)
Illinois had the largest number of local governments, according to the survey, with a total of 6,626. More than 1,000 of the ), state's local jurisdictions are school districts. Hawaii had the fewest number of local governments, with only 18. It has no local school districts.
U.S. Surgeon General C. Everett Koop reported last week that the No. 1 killer of children is not infectious diseases--as previously thought--but common, preventL able accidents.
At a Washington press conference, Dr. Koop said that more children die from preventable injuries each year than from all childhood diseases combined. Last year alone, nearly 8,000 children age 14 and younger were killed in such accidents, and 50,000 were permanently disabled. Dr. Koop estimated that within the next )2 12 months one child in four will suffer an injury serious enough to require medical at)4 tention.
Parents surveyed in December by a Washington-based research group said they were most concerned about the threat to their children from abduction, crime and drugs. But the Surgeon General reported that these threats combined represent only a fraction of the risk of injuries.
Dr. Koop also announced the launch of a coalition of 24 national organizations that will develop a five-year campaign to help parents, children, and educators reduce injuries among children. The coalition is being organized and underwritten by Children's Hospital National Medical Center, the Johnson & Johnson Co., and the National Safety Council.
For more information, call Children's Hospital in Washington at (202) 939-4500.)