Make High School Graduation a National Priority
NEA supports making high school graduation a national priority by investing $10 billion over the next 10 years to support dropout prevention programs, starting with $1 billion appropriation in FY08.
- According to estimates, about 30 percent of high school students drop out before graduation, meaning about one million students fail to graduate from high school every year.
- Only five in 10 Black and Hispanic students graduate on time with a standard diploma, and less than one-half of American Indian and Alaska Native students complete high school.
- Studies show that each class of high school dropouts costs the nation more than $200 billion in lost wages and tax revenues, as well as spending for social support programs.
- High school dropouts have an earnings disadvantage that tends to remain with them throughout their lives. Without the required education to obtain a good-paying job, high school dropouts often face a bleak future.
- Approximately 47 percent of high school dropouts are employed, compared to 64 percent of high school graduates not in college.
- The majority of inmates at state and federal prisons failed to complete high school.
- A 2006 study by Civic Enterprises shared dropouts' insights on why they left school before graduation. They cited a number of factors that would have kept them in school: enhancing the connection between school and work; providing real-world learning experiences; making school more relevant and engaging; and providing more help to struggling students.
- America’s Promise Alliance: Captures the latest data, state trends, and advocacy efforts related to increasing graduation rates.
- Association for Middle Level Education: Provides targeted information and resources for middle grades instruction and advocacy.
- Attendance Works: Provides tools, technical assistance contacts, and advocacy documents related to chronic absenteeism.
- Center on Budget and Policy Priorities: Prepares reports on state-by-state spending per-pupil. Data is searchable and users may sign up for policy alerts.
- Children’s Defense Fund: Releases annual figures on the conditions of incarcerated youth. (PDF, 2.6 MB, 91 pgs.)
- Dignity in Schools: Provides annual facts on the number and demographic breakdown of school suspensions and expulsions. (PDF, 610 KB, 2 pgs.)
- Family School Community Partnerships 2.0 (PDF, 7.0 MB, 81 pg.): Compiles strategies and examples of for collaborations and interventions that have improved family engagement and student achievement.
- GPS Indicators: Provides a research-based framework to assess and build advocacy around seven criteria that affect student success. Resources include one-pagers for each criteria and related family and community brochures.
- National Center for Education Statistics: Compiles national data on elementary and secondary schools, including annual reporting of on-time graduation rates. Topic searches are available.
- Restorative Justice Toolkit: (PDF, 1.6 MB, 16 pgs.): Offers a compilation of resources and strategies to foster positive discipline measures to reduce the need for suspensions, expulsions, and referrals.
- Dropout Data: 2007 - 2010