While the correlation between standardized test scores and life outcomes down the road are (rightly) debated, high school graduation is one education outcome that everyone can agree matters.
The Alliance for Excellent Education (www.All4ed.org) released a study today showing how much more students in our nation’s largest metro areas would earn if the dropout rates in these cities were slashed in half.
The income boost for the hypothetical graduates in the Cleveland metro? They’re estimated at a collective $52 million per year for 4,048 happy graduates.And $39 million per year in the Columbus area for nearly 3,000 new grads. All this without even accounting for the broader impacts of higher tax bases, better trained entrepreneurs and employees, and neighborhood stability.
Together with the 48 other largest metro areas, the study predicts more than $4B in income gains per year for 299,878 students if the dropout rate dropped by half in these urban zones. While $4B wouldn’t be enough to recoup Freddie Mac’s 3rd quarter losses, the impact on individual families and urban revitalization would be huge.
Now we know what we’re missing out on in Columbus and Cleveland. The question, of course, is this: What are we going to do about it?
- Sarah Pechan