Why does a diploma matter?
America’s Promise Alliance notes that graduation rates are uneven for students of different races, ethnicities, family incomes, disabilities, and English proficiencies. These “graduation gaps” imperil progress.
A DIPLOMA MATTERS to individuals, families, communities, and society. High school graduates are:
- more likely to be employed
- more likely make higher taxable income
- more likely to aid in job generation
- more likely to be engaged in their communities
- more likely to vote and volunteer
- more likely to have better health and longer life expectancy
- less likely to engage in criminal behavior or require social services.
Additional research resources at http://www.americaspromise.org/dropout-crisis-facts and http://all4ed.org/
Data from the National Center for Education Statistics shows Virginia’s high school dropout rates decreasing in recent years, falling from 3% in 2003 to 1.9% in 2012 — the 5th lowest dropout rate in the country. Virginia’s 2012 rate was also lower than the national average of 3.3 percent and the rates of its peer states: Maryland (3.8%), Tennessee (3.7%), and North Carolina (3.1%).