New York’s high school graduation rate is falling, according to a study published Tuesday by The Atlantic.
The report found that the graduation rate for graduating high school seniors in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania fell from 65.5 percent in 2010 to 55.5 in 2015, a decline of more than 20 percentage points.
The decline was especially pronounced in New Jersey, where the graduation rates dropped from 68.4 percent to 53.4.
The report’s authors cited the declining rate of college graduates as a key reason.
“As New York residents who want to enter the workforce, we are becoming more educated than ever before.
However, the number of graduating college graduates has remained stagnant for the past several years, and the number who are college-educated is projected to grow by more than 5 million over the next five years, to more than 40 million by 2026,” said the authors of the study, David K. Schott and Elizabeth J. Mancuso.
Klein High School in Manhattan, where I grew up, saw the greatest drop in graduation rates.
A high school diploma earned a high school student about $46,000 in 2020, the study said.
However, in 2019, Klein graduates had a median annual income of $49,500, the lowest level of income for graduating college students.
High school graduates also tended to have less job skills than their non-graduating peers, and more of them were unemployed.
They also tended more likely to have poor credit scores and were less likely to attend college, the report said.
“In terms of job skills, graduating college-bound New Yorkers are more likely than non-college-bound high school grads to be in low-paying jobs, and they are less likely than graduates of other schools to have degrees in those fields,” the authors said.
More graduates are likely to earn college diplomas than graduates in the general population.
About a quarter of graduates have earned college diplomases in their lifetime, and about 13 percent have a master’s degree, according the report.
But there’s an even bigger gap between graduates of high schools and non-graduate college graduates.
In 2020, only 13 percent of non-resident high school students who graduated had a college degree.
According to the report, nearly half of graduating high schools students have a bachelor’s degree.
The authors pointed out that high school dropouts and those with a high debt burden tend to have a greater college graduation rate.
One of the main reasons for the declining graduation rates is the rising costs of college, said David Kuzniewski, an associate professor of economics at Cornell University and author of the report The High Cost of College.
While graduates of colleges and universities tend to earn more, the gap between them and nongraduate students has increased over the past few decades.
This trend, combined with stagnant wages and higher levels of student debt, has created a new generation of graduates that have had little or no experience in the job market, Kuznick said.
“The result is a generation of students who have no idea what they want to do in life and have no interest in attending a college,” he said.