“Is a bad dropout rate really that big of a deal?”

 
 “Graduation rates are a fundamental indicator of whether or not the nation’s public school system is doing what it is intended to do: enroll, engage, and educate youth to be productive members of society.”  (Alliance for Excellent Education, 2009)

 

The Alliance for Excellent Education provides a few facts concerning why “a bad dropout rate” is “really that big of a deal” for the entire community.

(Just in case the formatting is off the quote begins here and ends with reference)

HIGH SCHOOL DROPOUTS COST NORTH CAROLINA BILLIONS IN LOST WAGES:

If the nearly 42,000 high school dropouts from the Class of 2008 had earned their diplomas instead of dropping out, North Carolina’s economy would have seen an additional $10.8 billion in wages over these students’ lifetimes. More information and a chart with state-by-state breakdown for all fifty states and the District of Columbia is available at http://www.all4ed.org/files/HighCost.pdf.

NORTH CAROLINA’S ECONOMY COULD SEE BILLIONS IN WEALTH ACCUMULATION BY RAISING THE HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATION RATE:

If the high school dropouts who currently head households in North Carolina had earned their diplomas, the state’s economy would have benefited from an additional $2.6 billion in wealth accumulated by families. More information, as well as a chart with state-by-state breakdown for all fifty states and the District of Columbia, is available at http://www.all4ed.org/files/hiddenbenefits.pdf.

NORTH CAROLINA COULD SAVE MILLIONS IN HEALTH CARE COSTS BY RAISING HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATION RATES

If all of the students in North Carolina who are estimated to drop out of school this year earn diplomas instead, the state could save more than $492 million over the course of those young people’s lifetimes. More information, as well as a chart with state-by-state breakdown for all fifty states and the District of Columbia, is available at http://www.all4ed.org/files/HandW.pdf.

NORTH CAROLINA’S ECONOMY WOULD SEE BILLIONS IF THE MINORITY GRADUATION RATE WAS RAISED TO THE LEVEL OF THEIR WHITE CLASSMATES

If North Carolina’s high schools and colleges were to raise the graduation rates of Hispanic, African-American, and Native-American students to the levels of white students by 2020, the potential increase in personal income in the state would add more than $5.0 billion to North Carolina’s economy. More information, as well as a chart with state-by-state breakdown for all fifty states and the District of Columbia, is available at http://www.all4ed.org/files/demography.pdf.

NORTH CAROLINA SPENDS MILLIONS ANNUALLY ON REMEDIAL EDUCATION FOR RECENT HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATES

North Carolina spends over $97 million each year to provide community college remediation education for recent high school graduates who did not acquire the basic skills necessary to succeed in college or at work. More information, as well as a chart with state-by-state breakdown for all fifty states and the District of Columbia, is available at http://www.all4ed.org/files/remediation.pdf.

FIVE PERCENT INCREASE IN MALE GRADUATION RATE COULD SAVE NORTH CAROLINA MILLIONS IN CRIME-RELATED SPENDING

Were North Carolina to increase the graduation rate and college matriculation of its male students by only 5 percent, the state could see combined savings and revenue of almost $233 million each year. More information, as well as a chart with state-by-state breakdown for all fifty states and the District of Columbia, is available at http://www.all4ed.org/files/SavingFutures.pdf. (Alliance for Excellent Education, July, 2009).

References

Alliance for Excellent Education (July, 2009). Understanding High School Graduation Rates in North Carolina (Retrieved April 18, 2010 @ http://www.all4ed.org/files/NorthCarolina_wc.pdf ).

Additional information validating the impact of dropouts can be found at the following
http://www.cnn.com/2009/US/05/05/dropout.rate.study/index.html

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About Dolley Madison

Born prior to the signing of the Declaration of Independence, I grew up during a time when the country was striving to develop an identity and witnessed America evolve from a struggling young republic to the first modern democracy in the world. My parents were strict Quaker parents and I accepted my father's wishes to marry a young Quaker lawyer, John Todd. After only three years of marriage, both my husband and youngest son died of Yellow Fever. Widowed and a single parent, I met U.S. Congressional Representative James Madison and we were married four months later. When my husband became the fourth President of the United States in 1809, I assumed the then ill-defined role of the presidential wife. Considering throughout the world other nations were ruled by kings and emperors, I guess there were worse things than being called “Queen Dolley”. America and the capital were still new with no established rules of presidential behavior in a democratic republic. Besides just how many women can say they were friends with the first 12 Presidents or presided over the first Inaugural Ball in Washington? After the War of 1812, when several politicians talked of abandoning the ravaged capitol and returning to Philadelphia, I continued to host social events, sending a clear message to influential members of Congress and Washington society that Washington was not beyond repair. Today I still believe that Washington is not beyond repair with a new era of bipartisanship and behind-the-scenes politicking!
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