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Friday, 26th January 2007

The High Cost of High School Dropouts: What the Nation Pays for Inadequate High Schools

The High Cost of High School Dropouts: What the Nation Pays for Inadequate High Schools (PDF; 83 KB)
Source: Alliance for Excellent Education
From press release:

If high school dropouts of the nation’s class of 2006 had instead earned their diplomas with their classmates, the U.S. economy could have benefited from an additional $309 billion in wages over these students’ lifetimes, according to conservative calculations by the Alliance for Excellent Education in its new brief, The High Cost of High School Dropouts: What the Nation Pays for Inadequate High Schools, funded by MetLife Foundation.

The average annual income for a high school dropout in 2004, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, was over $9,000 less than for a high school graduate. Graduating all students, therefore, increases overall earnings potential, which, in turn, benefits the nation with increased purchasing power and higher tax receipts.

The Alliance’s brief argues that dropouts drain the nation’s economy by lowering tax revenues and increasing the cost of social programs. High school graduates, on the other hand, make higher wages and live longer. They are less likely to be teen parents, commit crimes, and rely on government healthcare.


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