Phi Beta Cons

Low Hispanic Graduation Rates: Whose Fault?

I read here that there is a new report out from AEI that engages in the usual hand-wringing over graduation rates for a minority population. “Far too many four-year colleges and universities graduate less than half of their Hispanic students,” we’re told.

That makes the schools out to be the problem. But colleges and universities are delighted to graduate any student who completes the work necessary for the degree. Why don’t more students from this population subset? I suggest it’s because many of them are neither academically prepared for college (even as weak as many schools now are in terms of standards) nor much interested in the coursework. Moreover, it may occur to some that having a college degree might do them little good, since so many college grads end up working in “high school jobs.”

Worrying about national college “attainment rates” is the sort of central-planning thinking that leads to a waste of resources — no matter what the specific subject is.

George Leef is the the director of editorial content at the James G. Martin Center for Academic Renewal.

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