Paying for dropouts

Community college dropouts cost federal, state and local taxpayers nearly $4 billion over a five-year period, concludes a new study. The study looked at first-year, full-time, credential-seeking students, who are much more likely to graduate. Add in part-timers and it gets much worse.

Also on Community College Spotlight: Postsecondary education is the path out of poverty, but many stumble along the way.

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  1. Richard Aubrey says:

    What does “cost” mean? If the drop out, is there an extra penalty assessed against taxpayers in addition to the expenses thus far? Probably not. What it means is it costs as much to educate a drop out as it does a potential grad to the point where their ways diverge. So “costs” must actually mean spent on a guy who doesn’t graduate and thus is wasted.
    Presumably, the drop out, if he went to a few classes, learned something, however little. May be useful, in some way or another.
    My wife once taught at a business college where some of her students were there as a condition of keeping the welfare coming.
    I’d be interested in a survey of why they dropped out, which would include why they started.