What are the dropout rates of high school students?
The status dropout rate represents the percentage of 16- through 24-year-olds who are not enrolled in school and have not earned a high school credential (either a diploma or an equivalency credential such as a General Educational Development [GED] certificate).
Status dropouts are no longer attending school (public or private) and do not have a high school level of educational attainment. Based on data from the Current Population Survey, the status dropout rate decreased from 12 percent in 1990 to 7 percent in 2013, with most of the decline occurring after 2000 (when it was 11 percent). However, there was no measurable difference between the 2012 rate and the 2013 rate.
Between 1990 and 2013, the male status dropout rate declined from 12 to 7 percent, with nearly the entire decline occurring after 2000 (when it was still 12 percent). For females, the rate declined from 12 percent in 1990 to 10 percent in 2000, and then decreased further to 6 percent in 2013. From 1997 through 2012, the status dropout rate was higher for males than for females, but in 2013 the rate for males was not measurably different from the rate for females.
In each year from 1990 to 2013, the status dropout rate was lower for Whites than for Blacks, and the rates for both Whites and Blacks were lower than the rate for Hispanics. During this period, the rate for Whites declined from 9 to 5 percent; the rate for Blacks declined from 13 to 7 percent; and the rate for Hispanics declined from 32 to 12 percent. As a result, the gap between Whites and Hispanics narrowed from 23 percentage points in 1990 to 7 percentage points in 2013. Most of the gap was narrowed between 2000 and 2013, during which the White-Hispanic gap declined from 21 percent to 7 percent. The rates for both Whites and Blacks declined from 1990 to 2013, but the gap between the rates in 1990 did not measurably differ from the gap between the rates in 2013. However, the White-Black gap of 2 percentage points in 2013 (when rates were 5 and 7 percent, respectively) was smaller than the White-Black gap of 6 percentage points in 2000 (when rates were 7 and 13 percent, respectively).
Status dropout rates of 16- through 24-year-olds, by race/ethnicity: 1990 through 2013
NOTE: The "status dropout rate" represents the percentage of 16- through 24-year-olds who are not enrolled in school and have not earned a high school credential (either a diploma or an equivalency credential such as a General Educational Development [GED] certificate). Data are based on sample surveys of the civilian noninstitutionalized population, which excludes persons in prisons, persons in the military, and other persons not living in households. Data for all races include other racial/ethnic categories not separately shown. Race categories exclude persons of Hispanic ethnicity.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. (2015). The Condition of Education 2015 (NCES 2015-144), Status Dropout Rates.
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