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Youth Indicators, 2005: Trends in the Well-Being of American Youth

Indicator 19: Dropouts

Figure 19. Percentage of persons ages 16 to 24 years who were status dropouts, by race/ethnicity: 1972 to 2003

Percentage of persons ages 16 to 24 years who were status dropouts, by race/ethnicity: 1972 to 2003
NOTE: 'Status' dropouts are 16- to 24-year-olds who are not enrolled in school and have not completed a high school program regardless of when they left school. People who have received GED credentials are counted as high school completers. All data are based on October counts. Data are based upon sample surveys of the civilian noninstitutionalized population. Because of changes in data collection, data from 1992 onward may not be comparable with figures prior to 1992.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Digest of Education Statistics, 2004, based on U.S. Department of Commerce, Census Bureau, Current Population Survey (CPS), October, unpublished data.

Between the years 1993 and 1998, the proportion of all 16- to 24-year-olds who were status dropouts fluctuated between 11 and 12 percent. There was a decrease in the proportion of all 16- to 24-year-olds who were status dropouts between 1998 (12 percent) and 2003 (10 percent). However, there continue to be large differences between racial/ethnic groups. In 2003, the proportion of 16- to 24-year-old Hispanic status dropouts (24 percent) was higher than either the proportion of Black or White status dropouts (11 and 6 percent, respectively). Also, Black 16- to 24-year-olds were more likely to become status dropouts than White 16- to 24-year-olds. In addition, a higher proportion of males than females were status dropouts (11 percent vs. 8 percent).


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