Conservative pundit Mark Steyn just said this to Fox News' Tucker Carlson:

In Arizona, a majority of the grade-school children now are Hispanic. That means Arizona's future is as an Hispanic society. That means, in effect, the border has moved North.

My question is, is it true that a majority of grade-school children in Arizona are Hispanic? I assume there should be readily available statistics on this.

  • 9
    Does he really think nobody realizes that what he's implying with this line of reasoning is "Only white people count as American" ?
    – Shadur
    Jan 20, 2018 at 10:17
  • @Shadur it’s possible to be white and Hispanic IIRC. Jan 20, 2018 at 12:59
  • 7
    @AndrewGrimm Among white supremacists, "white" never was a skin color. Back in the 17th century when the idea of white supremacy first emerged, the only "white" races were those from around the North Sea; Great Britain, France, Germany, Scandinavia, etc. Spaniards and Portuguese were not "white." Other Europeans were not "white." The Irish were not "white." The tent is more inclusive today, but the idea hasn't changed: When they say "white," they mean "Our Kind," and when they say "non-white,"... Well, there really isn't any polite way to say what they mean in that case. Jan 20, 2018 at 21:45
  • 2
    What silliness. By analogy with his comments, I suggest that the US doesn’t exist, and is in reality Southern Canada. The border has moved south. After all, the majority of Americans are the same ethnicity as the majority of Canadians.... ;) Of course, as one of the invading Canadians who are destroying our culture, he wouldn’t understand this.
    – Obie 2.0
    Jan 21, 2018 at 21:26
  • 2
    @jameslarge Yes, most notably they still don't consider Jews to be white, however white their skin is. Jan 21, 2018 at 21:52

1 Answer 1


The actual figure appears to be about 45%, though it takes a little sorting to determine. According to the enrollment figures for the Arizona Department of Education on their Accountability & Research page for the 2016-17 school year, 511,608 of 1,126,441 public school students were "EthnicHispanicLatino," which is 45.4 percent.

But that includes high school grades 9-12; Arizona grade school is broken down as grades 1-8.

The grade school student number was 44.9%, according to my crunching of the Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction's Superintendent’s Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2014-2015, the most recent report posted by the Arizona Department of Education at http://www.azed.gov/superintendent/superintendents-annual-report/.) (Figures are for Fiscal Year 2013-14 and may have changed.) For students enrolled in grades 1-8 in district schools, 272,638 of 580,000, or 47.0%, were identified as Hispanic. For students enrolled in grades 1-8 in charter schools, 35,887 of 106,277, or 33.8%, were identified as Hispanic. Aggregated, that's 308,525 Hispanic students out of 686,917 total students, for 44.9%.

Which does raise the question of how students are determined to be Hispanic, which turns out to be based on what Arizona labels Federal Race/Ethnicity Data Guidance, which appears to be summed up by the federal Department of Education as "New Race and Ethnicity Guidance for the Collection of Federal Education Data," from August 2008.

Generally, "Hispanic" is an ethnicity, typically self-reported, so both Hispanic and non-Hispanic categories include American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian, Black/African American, Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander, White, and Multi-Racial.

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