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ONE-THIRD OF A NATION: AMERICA'S ESCALATING HIGH SCHOOL DROPOUT CRISIS
As Congress, governors, and state education officials turn their attention now to high school reform, a new report from ETS warns that little is being done to address rising dropout rates, declining earnings for dropouts in the job market, and reduced public investments in effective second-chance efforts. Issued by ETS's Policy Information Center, the report tracks dwindling high school completion rates throughout the 1990s, which persist today.  The report also found clear evidence that more students are dropping out earlier, between ninth and tenth grades. Coupled with the finding of too few counselors and a steep decline in federal investment, from about $15 billion in the late 1970s to about $3 billion today, the outlook is not good. "This is a story of losing ground," writes author Paul Barton.  "At the same time that the dropout rate is increasing and out-of-school education and training opportunities are dwindling, the economic status of young dropouts has been in a free fall since the late 1970s.  Employment and earnings prospects have declined and even for those who work full time, earnings have dropped steadily to averages around the poverty line for a family with children."
http://www.ets.org/research/pic/onethird.pdf (This is an Acrobat Reader File)

Source:  PEN Weekly NewsBlast for February 25, 2005

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Editorial comment from Barry  Shaffer:  This report shows a serious dropout concern for Minnesota.  To complicate this, I have a “suspicion” that like many state’s, Minnesota's drop-out rate as reported by school districts to the state is inaccurate and possibly fraudulent – at the least, it is seriously under-counted or under-reported for financial (aid entitlement) reasons.

 

 

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