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« Trivia Tidbit Of The Day: Part 433 -- JCT & CBO Projections. | WILLisms.com | Wednesday Caption Contest: Part 98 »

Trivia Tidbit Of The Day: Part 434 -- Texas Needs School Choice.

Fantastic Savings Possible-

Some school choice research from the Milton & Rose D. Friedman Foundation:

...each dropout costs the state $3,168 per year in lost tax revenue and increased Medicaid and incarceration costs, every year for the rest of his or her life. Each year’s class of dropouts costs the state $377 million every year. A modest school choice program, increasing private school enrollment by 5 percentage points, would improve public school graduation rates, reducing dropouts by up to 17,440 students per year, saving up to $53 million per year in public costs.

Those costs come from higher rates of incarceration, higher rates of Medicaid utilization, and lost tax revenue.

For example, note how many more dropouts than non-dropouts require Medicaid funds (.pdf):


Calculations of savings from school choice depend on school choice programs reducing the dropout rate. In studies across the country, this is decidedly the case. Much more on this phenomenon and others is available at the Friedman Foundation. There are a lot of reasons people oppose school choice. "It costs too much" really shouldn't be one of those reasons.


Previous Trivia Tidbit: Our Official Government Think-Tanks Are Doing A Poor Job.

Posted by Will Franklin · 3 April 2007 08:32 PM


The very act of taking one class in college lowers your chances of ending up on Medicaid (which is tied to the poverty level of the state) by 60%. Get a Bachelor's and it drops by 85%.

Hence the problems with poverty. It isn't this evil American society that keeps the poor down. It is that the poor lack sufficient motivation to no longer be poor. There are so many subsidized programs for the poor to attend college. Matter of fact, when I was going to college using Pell Grants, the GI Bill, and Student Loans, I actually made almost double the money per week by going to school than I did off my full-time job.

Now I am not in poverty and I get to pay much higher marginal tax rates so that I can subsidize the healthcare of the folks that were too lazy to work two jobs and go to school at the same time like I did. My kids go to good schools and I have savings for them to go to college since they won't qualify for government subsidies since we are not poor enough.

Fact is that college is not difficult. It requires attendance and dilligence. Community Colleges are everywhere and are affordable.

Posted by: Justin B at April 4, 2007 10:02 AM

Oh, yeah, I spent almost five years finishing my first two years of college part time at the local Community College(s). While my GPA was much higher, I have seen people that were Forest Gump level graduate with Associate Degrees.

If you don't get sold on Women's Studies or Sociology or one of the other "Liberal" Arts degrees, I bet your chances of ending up on medicaid with a degree approach ZERO.

Posted by: Justin B at April 4, 2007 10:06 AM