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Latest 'Condition of Education' Report Finds Rising Poverty, Pre-K Enrollment

By guest blogger Alyssa Morones

Nearly two-thirds of 3-to 5-year-olds were enrolled in preschool in 2012, and 60 percent of them were in full-day programs, according to the newest version of an annual report that tracks  developments and trends in the U.S. education system.

The 2014 "Condition of Education" report is produced by the National Center for Education Statistics, the primary federal entity for collecting and analyzing education data. The progress report includes findings on demographics of U.S. schools, resources for schooling, and educational outcomes.

Among this year's other key findings:

  • The report notes that, as of 2013, about 90 percent of young adults ages 25 to 29 held high school or equivalent diplomas and 34 percent had at least a bachelor's degree. It also noted that individuals in this age group with a bachelor's degree earned more than twice as much as high school dropouts.
  •  At the elementary and secondary levels, 50 million public school students were enrolled in 2011. Over 2 million of these students were enrolled in charter schools.
  • In 2012, one in five school-age children lived in poverty. This percentage has increased in the past decade: In 2000, this number was closer to one in seven.
  • In the 2011-2012 school year, 81 percent of public high school students, about 3.1 million total, graduated high school on time with a regular diploma.

Congress mandated that the NCES produce the report to help inform policymakers about the progress of education in the United States, according to the report's introduction. Most of the data was drawn from surveys and compilations of administrative records and surveys conducted by NCES or by the Census Bureau.

Education Week's blog post on the 2013 condition report can be found here

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