Bob Wise, President of the Alliance for Excellent Education, Issues Support Statement for Graduate for a Better Future Act
Bill Introduced Today by U.S. Senator Richard Burr of North Carolina
Bob Wise, president of the Alliance for Excellent Education and former governor of West Virginia, has issued the following statement in support of the Graduate for a Better Future Act, introduced today by U.S. Senator Richard Burr (R-NC):
“With the No Child Left Behind Act slated for renewal, this is an extremely important year for each state and the nation to strengthen support for our high schools, and Sen. Burr’s Graduate for a Better Future Act provides a blueprint for much-needed reform. The Burr bill will provide states, districts, and schools with the critical resources and tools they need to keep students from dropping out of high school and prepare our country’s young people to succeed in postsecondary education and the workforce.
“Nationally, about one-third of high school students will not graduate. Another one-third will graduate lacking the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed in college or the workforce. These numbers are even worse in communities of color; only about half of all African American and Hispanic students will graduate from high school.
“Such high dropout rates impact students and the nation. Students who do not graduate earn less than their classmates who get at least high school diplomas, and considerably less than those with college degrees. Almost 1.2 million students did not graduate from U.S. high schools in 2006, and will cost the nation more than $309 billion in lost wages, taxes, and productivity over their lifetimes. Furthermore, because too many students are not learning the basic skills needed to succeed in college or work while they are in high school, the nation loses more than $3.7 billion a year. This figure includes $1.4 billion spent to provide remedial education to students who have recently completed high school, as well as the almost $2.3 billion that the economy loses because students who require remediation are more likely to drop out of college without a degree, thereby reducing their earning potential.
“The Graduate for a Better Future Act would help ensure that our country’s high schools have the tools they need to help students graduate prepared for success. We at the Alliance for Excellent Education look forward to working with Sen. Burr to improve our nation’s high schools for all students.”
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The Alliance for Excellent Education is a Washington-based policy, research, and advocacy organization that works to make every child a graduate, prepared for postsecondary education and success in life.
For more information about the Alliance for Excellent Education, please visit: www.all4ed.com.