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8 Frightening Stats and Facts About High School Dropouts

  1. Each year nearly four million kids begin ninth grade. Nearly 1 million of them don’t make it to graduation. That’s nearly one out of every four students fail to graduate.
  2. A fifth of schools identified by the U.S. Department of Education are identified as “dropout factories,” where no more than 50 percent of students graduate.
  3. The unemployment rate for people without a high school diploma is nearly twice that of the general population.
  4. Over a lifetime, a high school dropout will earn $200,000 less than a high school graduate and almost $1 million less than a college graduate.
  5. Dropouts are more likely to commit crimes, abuse drugs and alcohol, become teenage parents, live in poverty and commit suicide.
  6. Dropouts cost federal and state governments hundreds of billions of dollars in lost earnings, welfare and medical costs, and billions more for dropouts who end up in prison.
  7. Almost half a million black teenagers drop out of school each year. Most will end up unemployed by their mid-30s. Six out of 10 black male dropouts will spend time in prison.
  8. The single biggest reason why girls drop out of school is pregnancy. 41 percent of Latinas leave high school because they get pregnant. These young women often end up with few job skills, more pregnancies and dependency on unreliable and sometimes violent men.

Read more about The High Cost of Dropping Out

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