New data suggest that the socioeconomic status of high school freshmen plays a role in their future education and employment.
The data come from the NCES High School Longitudinal Study of 2009 (HSLS:09), which follows a nationally representative group of ninth-graders. In 2009, NCES measured the socioeconomic status (SES) of these students by collecting data on the income, occupation, and educational attainment of their parents or guardians. In 2016, NCES conducted a follow-up survey with the 2009 ninth-graders, gathering data on their educational and employment status.
Data show that 2009 ninth-graders who were in the lowest-SES category were 20 percentage points more likely to be neither enrolled in postsecondary education nor working in 2016 than those in the highest-SES category (figure 1). These students were also 50 percentage points less likely to be enrolled in postsecondary institutions than those in the highest-SES category (figure 2).
These findings are just a glimpse into the insights on socioeconomic mobility that HSLS:09 can generate by linking data on parent and child educational attainment and employment.
Check out our recent spotlight indicator in the Condition of Education for more information on how the educational and employment outcomes of young adults varied in relation to family socioeconomic status.
By Joel McFarland