Tags: california | latinos | college | degree | Campaign | College Opportunity

Calif. Sees Economic Threat in Low Latino Graduation Rate

By    |   Thursday, 30 Apr 2015 02:03 PM

California is facing an education crisis in Latino students which could cripple the state's economic future if it is not corrected.

That's the conclusion of a new report from The Campaign for College Opportunity (CCO), which notes that only 12 percent of The Golden State's Latino student population have earned a college degree, the National Journal said.

Given that nearly 40 percent of the state's population is Latino, and given that California is estimated to need 2.3 million college-educated workers by 2025, the CCO report said, "the future of our economy and the state will rise and fall on the educational success of Latinos.

"To secure the economic future of California we need to significantly increase the number of Latino students who are prepared for, enroll in and graduate from college."

NBC reports that just 29 percent of the state's Latino students pass the high school courses known as A-G, which are required for admission to a four-year public university. By comparison, black students have the same average, but 65 percent of Asian students, 47 percent of white students and 35 percent of Pacific Islander students do pass the courses.

With the increasing cost of four-year universities, the report states, many Latino students enroll in lower-cost community colleges, but even there, only 39 percent earn a degree or transfer to a four-year university within six years.

The report cites the high cost of a college education, which has risen in California from an average of $5,530 per year to $13,200 per year over the last 10 years, as a major roadblock to Latino students attaining a college degree.

Between 1994 and 2013, Latino college admission in California declined by 28 points, with a 45-point drop at the University of California-Berkeley, alone, as compared to a 25-point drop in overall admissions.

At UCLA, Latino student admission declined by 46 points, compared with 33 points overall, and under one-third of Latino applicants are admitted to six of the University of California's nine campuses, the CCO report states.

The report suggests a number of changes which could improve Latino student enrollment in colleges, most notably that California's public universities be allowed to consider race and ethnicity as a criteria in enrollment. This stands in opposition to Proposition 209, passed in 1996, which bans public universities from taking race, sex or ethnicity into account for the purposes of enrollment.

The report urges that colleges "target recruitment and outreach to underrepresented students so that undergraduate enrollment reflects the racial/ethnic composition of the state's young adult population."

"The reality (is) that many Latino children grow up in families without college experience," the National Journal said.

"While Latino parents consistently report that they want their children to earn a college degree, they don't necessarily know how to coach their children through the process of college admission the way affluent white parents do."

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California is facing an education crisis in Latino students which could cripple the state's economic future if it is not corrected, a new report says.
california, latinos, college, degree, Campaign, College Opportunity
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2015-03-30
Thursday, 30 Apr 2015 02:03 PM
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