A report from the Alliance for Excellent Education said Kentucky’s economy could have benefited from an additional $4.5 billion in wages over student’s lifetimes, if last year’s high school dropouts had graduated.
The report said 69.7 percent of high school students graduated last year in Kentucky. That’s slightly more than the nation’s average graduation rate of 69.6 percent.
The group reports that dropouts drain the state and nation’s economy by lowering tax revenues and increasing the cost of social programs.
The report adds that high school graduates make higher wages and live longer.
The alliance said they’re also less likely to be teen parents, commit crimes or rely on government healthcare.