- The Progressive Pulse - http://pulse.ncpolicywatch.org -

Income-based inequality in educational attainment is cause for lagging college completion rates

A recently released report [1] from the Pell Institute for the Study of Opportunity in Higher Education [2] concludes that the best way to improve graduation rates is to target low-income students who are currently being underserved by our educational system.  Once a perennial world leader in college completion, the U.S. now ranks 12th out of 36 developed countries in the number of 25-34 year-old adults with some type of college degree.  In a 2009 address to a Joint Session of Congress, President Obama announced his goal for the U.S. to regain this status by 2020.  The report concludes that it is impossible to achieve this goal unless we target federal funding, college access and support services,  and financial aid expenditures toward low-income and underperforming schools.