Improve Early-Childhood Education to Help Reduce Texas Dropout Rate, Demographer Says

June 22, 2010 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

A leading demographer in Texas says the state must do more to prepare students for kindergarten to help reduce poverty and dropout rates, according to a recent story in the Houston Chronicle.

If steps aren’t taken to improve the situation, current trends will result in three of every 10 workers not having a high school education by 2040, said Steve Murdock, a sociology professor at Rice University and former head of the U.S. Census Bureau in the recent Bush administration. He said the state should also look for ways to offer more financial help to students for college.

“The data seems to show that if a kid walks into a learning situation for the first time when they are 5 or 6, that’s probably too late,” Murdock told the Chronicle.

These suggestions may be difficult to carry with budget crunches and the current political climate there. The Texas Republican Party this month called for the repeal of government programs dealing with early-childhood development and opposes mandatory preschool and kindergarten, the San Antonio Express News reported.

More than 130,000 Texas students who enter high school do not graduate with their class, the article says. Also, school districts with a high percentage of low-income students have higher dropout rates. Large school districts where low-income students make up at least 80 percent of the enrollment have dropout/attrition rates of 50 percent or more, the Chronicle article says.

Texas is on track to have household incomes $6,500 lower in 30 years than they were in 2000, according to Murdock’s projections. That number is not adjusted for inflation, according to the the Chronicle article.

Related Tags:

A version of this news article first appeared in the Early Years blog.


Jobs Virtual Career Fair for Teachers and K-12 Staff
Find teaching jobs and other jobs in K-12 education at the EdWeek Top School Jobs virtual career fair.
English-Language Learners Webinar English Learners and the Science of Reading: What Works in the Classroom
ELs & emergent bilinguals deserve the best reading instruction! The Reading League & NCEL join forces on best practices. Learn more in our webinar with both organizations.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Teaching Webinar
Challenging the Stigma: Emotions and STEM
STEM isn't just equations and logic. Join this webinar and discover how emotions fuel innovation, creativity, & problem-solving in STEM!
Content provided by Project Lead The Way

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Education Briefly Stated: February 7, 2024
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Briefly Stated: January 31, 2024
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
9 min read
Education Briefly Stated: January 17, 2024
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
9 min read
Education In Their Own Words The Stories That Stuck With Us, 2023 Edition
Our newsroom selected five stories as among the highlights of our work. Here's why.
4 min read
102523 IMSE Reading BS
Adria Malcolm for Education Week