Youth/Student Crisis Statistics

“A person with a clear purpose will make progress on even the roughest road. A person with no purpose will make no progress on even the smoothest road.”
-Thomas Carlyle

“Eliminating high school dropouts creates growth: 45k new grads likely yields $536million/year more state & local tax revenue.”
– Michael Wotorson, Executive Director, Campaign for High School Equity…

About the Crisis:

  • Every year, approximately 1.2 million students-That’s 7000 per school day Do NOT graduate from high school on time. Nationwide, only about 70 percent of students earn their high school diplomas.
  • Among minority students, only 57.8 percent of Hispanic, 53.4 percent of African American, graduate with a regular diploma, compared to 76.2 percent of white students…
  • Approximately 70 percent of all entering ninth-grade students read below grade level… many of these students will struggle to graduate with their classmates.
  • Of those students, who do earn their diplomas, many-both white and minority-will lack the skills they need to be successful in college or the modern workforce.
  • The single most important factor in determining student performance is often the quality of his or her teachers. However, far too many school districts are facing an uphill battle when it comes to recruiting and retaining highly effective teachers, especially those who serve poor students.
  • Almost 2,000 high schools across the country graduate less than 60 percent of their students. These high schools or “dropout factories” as they are known, account for over half of the dropouts who leave American schools every year.
  • One in three minority students (32 percent) attend a dropout factory, compared to only 8 percent of white students.
  • High school dropouts face long odds of landing a good-paying job in the ultra-competitive job market of the twenty-first century.
  • In addition, they are generally less healthy, die earlier, more likely to become parents when very young, more at risk of tangling with the criminal justice system, and are more likely to need social welfare assistance.
  • And the negative consequences to dropping out of high school don’t stop there. Dropouts earn less than graduates, with major repercussions for the American economy.
  • In fact, the Alliance for Excellent Education has estimated that the approximately 1.2 million students who should have graduated with the Class of 2008 will cost the nation nearly $319 billion in lost income over the course of their lifetimes.


SOURCE: 1201 Connecticut Avenue NW, Suite 901 | Washington, DC 20036 | Phone: 202 828 0828 | Fax: 202 828 0821 © Alliance for Excellent Education

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