United Way works to end America’s education crisis
Education is the cornerstone of individual and community success. But with more than 1.2 million children dropping out each year, America faces an education crisis. The cost? More than $312 billion in lost wages, taxes and productivity over their lifetimes.1 These trends are reversible, but only when communities and public, private and nonprofit sectors work together.
In 2019, United Way Worldwide launched a 10-year initiative improve education and achieve having 95 percent of students graduating highschool ready for college and career. To ensure strong communities, it is imperative that all our nation’s students graduate from high school prepared for post-secondary education or the workforce. United Way will fight for: Increased CCDBG funding to improve access to high quality child care for all children Increased funding for, and access to, high quality early childhood programs, Increased funding and/or set-asides as part of existing funding streams, and to support professional development and training for early childhood staff. Federal efforts to increase college access, Strengthened programs and policies that minimize student debt and help families make more informed borrowing decisions, and Funding for federal programs that provide youth with alternative pathways to post-secondary education and the careers of their choice.
We can’t focus on high school alone. High school dropouts are 12 years in the making, usually starting early childhood education behind schedule. United Way's model focuses on supportive communities, effective schools and strong families — strategies and approaches rooted in research. Tackling the education challenge requires reframing education on a birth to 21 continuum.
How You Can Help
To reach our goal, we need your help. The strategies proven to work are those that connect communities to their schools: parent involvement; literacy volunteers in the classroom; mentors for disadvantaged students; business leaders engaged in early childhood advocacy. Volunteer to help.
1Figure according to Communities in Schools, one of America’s leading drop-out prevention partnerships.