50 States, 1 Goal: Examining State-Level Recidivism Trends in the Second Chance Act Era

Workflow to Facilitate the Detection of New Psychoactive Substances and Drugs of Abuse in Influent Urban Wastewater

Understanding How Supervision Conditions are Set for People on Parole and Probation


Revenues and Expenditures for Public Elementary and Secondary Education: School Year 2021–22 (Fiscal Year 2022)

Supporting Academic Success for Military-Connected Students

Self-Directed Learning Skills: Strategies to Support Student Learning in Online STEM Courses


New Census Project Tracks Geographic and Demographic Aspects of Income Growth Among Working-Age Adults Over Time

401(k) Retirement Plans: U.S. Department of Labor Should Update Guidance on Target Date Funds

Charting Employers' Human Capital Investments in Frontline Retail Workers: Evidence from SEC Filings


Maternal Mortality Rates in the United States, 2022

Behavioral Health Among Older Adults: Results from the 2021 and 2022 National Surveys on Drug Use and Health

National Trends of Hospital Revenue, Profit, and Labor Costs: 2011-2022

May 10, 2024


This report discusses the progress made in addressing recidivism after the passage of the federal Second Chance Act in 2008. The report found that state-level reincarceration rates are 23% lower since 2008. Thirty-five percent of people exiting prison in 2008 were reincarcerated within 3 years, whereas 27% of people exiting prison in 2019 were reincarcerated within 3 years. In Florida, 28% of people exiting prison in 2008 were reincarcerated within 3 years, whereas in 2019, 21% of people exiting prison were reincarcerated within 3 years. Additionally, the report found that states will spend an estimated $8 billion on reincarceration costs for people who exited prison in 2022. The report estimates that Florida will spend $494 million on reincarceration costs for people who exited prison in 2022. The report notes that states are achieving these rates with changes in policy and by increasing opportunities and resources to support employment and connections to behavioral health care and housing.

Source: U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs

Utilizing the open-source InSpectra data processing platform and the HighResNPS library, this work establishes a comprehensive suspect screening workflow following liquid chromatography – high resolution mass spectrometry analysis In total, 278 urban influent wastewater samples from 47 sites in 16 countries were collected to investigate the presence of new psychoactive substances and other drugs of abuse. A total of 50 compounds were detected in samples from at least one site. Most compounds found were prescription drugs such as gabapentin (detection frequency 79%), codeine (40%) and pregabalin (15%). However, cocaine was the most found illicit drug (83%), in all countries where samples were collected apart from the Republic of Korea and China. Eight new psychoactive substances were also identified with this protocol: 3-methylmethcathinone 11%), eutylone (6%), etizolam (2%), 3-chloromethcathinone (4%), mitragynine (6%), phenibut (2%), 25I-NBOH (2%) and trimethoxyamphetamine (2%). The latter three have not previously been reported in municipal wastewater samples. The workflow employed allowed the prioritization of features to be further investigated, reducing processing time and gaining in confidence in their identification. The complexity around the dynamic markets for new psychoactive substances forces researchers to develop and apply innovative analytical strategies to detect and identify them in influent urban wastewater.

Source: U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs

This research examines the condition-setting process for probation and parole and whether probation and parole conditions based on risk level that target individuals’ criminogenic needs results in more success for individuals on supervision. The research found that parole boards relied heavily on standard supervision conditions, such as remaining law abiding and not leaving the state or county without permission, which were imposed automatically. Moreover, standard conditions made up the majority of conditions imposed, indicating most parole conditions were passively, rather than being individualized to the person being granted parole. Furthermore, judges relied on plea negotiations, which are initiated by prosecutors; therefore, prosecutors rather than judges played a key role in setting probation conditions. Additionally, the report makes three recommendations including reviewing existing research on supervision conditions, individualizing condition setting, and establishing a feedback loop to provide regular information about the success of individuals on parole and probation, as well as more detail about the reasons individuals fail parole and probation.

Source: Robina Institute


This report introduces new data for national and state-level public elementary and secondary revenues and expenditures for Fiscal Year 2021-22. The report includes school finance data such as, revenue and expenditure totals, revenues by source, and revenues and current expenditures per pupil. The report found that the 50 states and the District of Columbia reported $909.2 billion in revenues collected for public elementary and secondary education in Fiscal Year 2021-22. State and local governments provided $784.3 billion, or 86.3% of all revenues. The federal government contributed $124.9 billion, or 13.7% of all revenues. Total revenues increased by 1.3% after adjusting for inflation (from $897.2 to $909.2 billion) from Fiscal Year 2020-21 to Fiscal Year 2021-22. Additionally, current expenditures for public elementary and secondary education across the nation increased by 1.8% between Fiscal Year 2020-21 and Fiscal Year 2021-22, after adjusting for inflation (from $754.0 to $767.8 billion). In Fiscal Year 2021-22, current expenditures per pupil ranged from $9,496 in Utah to $29,284 in New York. In Florida, inflation-adjusted expenditures per pupil were $11,599 in Fiscal Year 2021-22.

Source: National Center for Education Statistics

The U.S. Department of Defense works in conjunction with state governments and education institutions to ensure that military-connected students receive the support they need to excel academically regardless of where duty calls their families. In 2024, at least seven states have introduced legislative efforts aimed at bolstering support for military-connected students. Delaware's House Bill (H.B.) 310 would broaden its legal framework to include the Space Force, which aligns with the evolving U.S. armed forces landscape. New Hampshire’s H.B. 1382 focuses on creating tailored special education support for military-connected transfer students to acknowledge their transitional needs. Other states have introduced legislation that specifically addresses Purple Star Schools. For example, Arizona's H.B. 2246 and Colorado’s H.B. 24-1076 would establish their respective state’s Purple Star School Program to recognize and aid schools in providing transition support to military-connected students and their families. Kentucky's H.B. 469 defines "military-connected student" and "purple star school." This bill would also assign oversight to the Kentucky Commission on Military Affairs for effective implementation. Maryland's Senate Bill 707 would extend the definition of “military-connected student” to encompass Space Force members and National Guard personnel from other states to ensure inclusivity within Purple Star Schools. Florida's H.B. 1285 (signed by the Governor in April 2024) revises provisions that would codify the Purple Star School District Program and introduce specialized transfer degrees for military-connected students.

Source: Education Commission of the States

This brief reviews obstacles students face in online science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) courses and the ways that institutions and instructors can better support these students through self-directed learning (SDL). Self-directed learning is a collection of emotions, beliefs, attitudinal mindsets, and cognitive or behavioral processes used to manage learning tasks. In concept, when instructors create inclusive conditions that feature the use of instructional supports targeting self-directed learning, students achieve better results, particularly in online courses. Using data from a survey of online STEM instructors, the authors found that instructors perceived online courses as learning environments where it is more difficult to engage students and help them stay on track with their coursework. Faculty from the physical sciences in particular were concerned about student engagement in online laboratory sections that do not provide opportunities for hands-on learning. Nearly 20% of all survey respondents were wholly unaware of the idea of SDL, and another third of respondents reported lacking the training and information to incorporate it into their practice. Overall, the survey and interviews revealed that, among the sample, faculty incorporation of SDL-supportive practices is not consistent or prevalent.

Source: Community College Research Center


Black non-Hispanic men saw their incomes rise at a considerably slower rate between 2005 and 2019 than White non-Hispanic men, even among those who started out earning similar amounts. Meanwhile, Asian and White non-Hispanic men experienced the greatest income increases over the same period. These and other findings emerge from new data released as part of the U.S. Census Bureau’s Mobility, Opportunity, and Volatility Statistics (MOVS) project. Through an interactive data tool, MOVS offers unprecedented insight into general and group-specific patterns of income and household change over time. This sort of detail is rare in existing data, which often relies on survey snapshots in time rather than on data collected by tracking the same people over long periods of time. In Florida, for 2015, the average income for White, non-Hispanic men with near-median incomes in 2005 (ten years prior) was between $42,000 and $44,999. For Black, non-Hispanic men who started at the same income in 2005, their average income in 2015 was between $36,000 and $38,999.

Source: U.S. Department of Commerce, Census Bureau

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) examined the performance and risk of target date funds (TDFs).TDFs are a 401(k) option that allocate assets based on when participants plan to retire. TDFs are widely offered and have become the most popular investment option used by 401(k) plan participants. TDFs allocate assets over time based on participants' targeted retirement dates. However, GAO found that variation in TDF design affects their performance and risk. Asset managers design TDFs' investment mixes to shift from higher risk assets (e.g., stocks) to lower risk assets (e.g., fixed income) over time, based on participants' targeted retirement dates. These mixes varied more within 10 years of the target date, according to GAO's analysis of Morningstar Direct data. The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and the Securities and Exchange Commission oversee TDFs through disclosure requirements, enforcement, and examinations. But DOL's guidance has not been updated and lacks detail. GAO recommended DOL update its 2013 guidance for plan sponsors and its 2010 guidance for plan participants on selecting TDFs.

Source: U.S. Government Accountability Office

This report explores how large retail companies invest in the human capital of their frontline workers, using information disclosed in annual filings to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The report found that the SEC's decision in 2020 to mandate the inclusion of human capital information in annual filings substantially changed the content of large retail companies' disclosures. Although, the mandate provided minimal guidelines for what information the companies were required to disclose, most large retail employers' disclosures about investments in frontline workers were low quality. Most aspects of human capital disclosures did not appear to affect company valuations. Many companies with track records of investing in workers did not have high-quality disclosures, suggesting that these companies could financially benefit from enhancing their disclosures with respect to their investments in frontline workers.

Source: RAND Corporation


This report presents maternal mortality rates for 2022 based on data from the National Vital Statistics System. A maternal death is defined by the World Health Organization as “the death of a woman while pregnant or within 42 days of termination of pregnancy, irrespective of the duration and the site of the pregnancy, from any cause related to or aggravated by the pregnancy or its management, but not from accidental or incidental causes”. Maternal mortality rates— the number of maternal deaths per 100,000 live births—are shown in this report by age group and race and Hispanic origin. In 2022, 817 women died of maternal causes in the United States, compared with 1,205 in 2021, 861 in 2020, 754 in 2019, and 658 in 2018. The maternal mortality rate for 2022 decreased to 22.3 deaths per 100,000 live births, compared with a rate of 32.9 in 2021. In 2022, maternal mortality rates decreased significantly for Black non-Hispanic, White non-Hispanic, and Hispanic women. The observed decrease for Asian non-Hispanic women was not statistically significant. In 2022, the maternal mortality rate for Black women was 49.5 deaths per 100,000 live births and was significantly higher than rates for White (19.0), Hispanic (16.9), and Asian (13.2) women. The rate for women age 40 and older was six times higher than the rate for women younger than age 25. Differences in the rates between age groups were statistically significant.

Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

This report focuses on substance use and mental health indicators among older adults (aged 60 or older) in the United States based on data from the 2021 and 2022 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. The report found that nearly about 9.7 million older adults smoked cigarettes in the past month, and 10 million older adults engaged in binge drinking in the past month. Older adult males were more likely than older adult females to have engaged in binge drinking in the past month, and older adult males were twice as likely as older adult females to have engaged in heavy drinking in the past month. Furthermore, the report found that 9.5 million older adults used illicit drugs in the past year, including 7.7 million who used marijuana (9.9%) and 1.8 million who misused opioids (2.3%). The report also examined mental health outcomes and found that an estimated 9.8 million older adults had any mental illness in the past year (12.5%), including 1.5 million (1.9%) who had serious mental illness. Older adult females were more than twice as likely as older adult males to have had serious mental illness in the past year. About 12.7 million older adults (16.0%) received mental health treatment in the past year. Older adult females were more likely than older adult males to have received mental health treatment(19.6% vs. 11.9%).

Source: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

This data brief examines national trends of hospital revenue, profit, and labor cost from 2011 to 2022, focusing on changes during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. The report found that the national median operating profit margin declined by 2 percentage points from 13% in 2021 to 11% in 2022. The national median net P\profit margin, on the other hand, dropped significantly from 12% in 2021 to 2% in 2022. The authors noted this drop is likely attributable to the reduction in COVID-19 funding, the stock market decline, and an increase in operating expenses in 2022. The report also found that the national median direct patient care labor cost per adjusted discharge rose by 31% from 2019 to 2022, driven by a faster pace of growth in median direct patient care labor cost than in median adjusted patient discharges. Furthermore, the national median direct patient care labor cost for both hospital employed labor and contracted labor continued to rise in 2022, but the rate of growth was faster for contracted labor than for hospital employed labor.

Source: Mathematica

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