Hispanic Dropouts and Federal Programs

Gao ID: PEMD-94-18R April 6, 1994

Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on federal programs that address the Hispanic high school dropout problem, focusing on: (1) the availability of these programs in areas with large Hispanic populations; and (2) whether sufficient participation data are available to support conclusions regarding program coverage. GAO noted that: (1) there are many federal education programs that are designed to prevent high school students from dropping out and increase the high school graduation rate; (2) most program officials do not have sufficient race and ethnicity data to estimate whether federal programs adequately serve the Hispanic community; (3) half of the school dropout demonstration projects and one-third of the programs that promote secondary and postsecondary education are located in the states that have the largest Hispanic populations; and (4) the Department of Education needs to improve its data collection procedures so that it can better serve Hispanic communities and distribute program funds more equitably.

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