California, April 27, 2011 - Every 26 seconds a student drops out of high school. This is a startling statistic for our nation. Even more alarming is that in California, an estimated 199,400 youth dropped out from the class of 2010. Dropping out of high school has significant repercussions not only for these students, but for the California economy as well.
A new study that State Farm supported from the Alliance for Excellent Education (the Alliance) reveals that reducing the number of California dropouts in half would result in tremendous economic benefits for our state. Below are contributions that 99,700 “new graduates” would likely make to the state’s economy:
The Alliance, America's Promise and State Farm have been working to put an end to the dropout crisis in America. As part of this effort, State Farm has created a public awareness campaign entitled “26 seconds” targeted at the nation’s youth. The campaign will use music, sports and video to engage students and encourage them to “BMOR.” This campaign provides an online venue for youth to express feelings on the dropout issue and creatively share their thoughts and talents while encouraging their peers to make graduation a priority.
In addition, the State Farm Companies Foundation announced a scholarship program. 26 scholarships will go to students who are typically not eligible for many traditional scholarship programs. Students will be able to use the two-year scholarship totaling $5,000, to help fund college, university, technical or vocational school attendance. Scholarship program information and eligibility guidelines will soon be available exclusively via the 26 seconds Web site. For more information about the 26 seconds campaign visit: www.26seconds.com.
The Alliance study also looked at 16 different California metro areas to determine the economic impact each area could experience if the dropout rate were to be cut in half:
State Farm insures more cars and homes than any other insurer in the U.S., is the leading insurer of watercraft and is also a leading insurer in Canada. State Farm's 17,700 agents and more than 67,000 employees serve 81 million policies and accounts - almost 79 million auto, fire, life and health policies in the United States and Canada, and nearly 2 million bank accounts. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company is the parent of the State Farm family of companies. State Farm is ranked No. 34 on the Fortune 500 list of largest companies. For more information, please visit State Farm® or in Canada statefarm.ca®.
America's Promise Alliance is the nation's largest partnership organization dedicated to improving the lives of children and youth by raising awareness, supporting communities, and engaging in nonpartisan advocacy. Through our Grad Nation campaign, we harness the collective power of our partner network to mobilize Americans to end the high school dropout crisis and prepare young people for college and the 21st century workforce. Building on the legacy of our Founding Chairman General Colin Powell, the Alliance believes the success of our young people is grounded in the Five Promisescaring adults; safe places; a healthy start; an effective education; and opportunities to help others. For more information about America's Promise Alliance, visit www.americaspromise.org.
The Alliance for Excellent Education is a Washington, DC-based policy, research and advocacy organization that works to make every child a high school graduate who is prepared for postsecondary education and success in life. For information about the Alliance, please visit www.all4ed.org.