Free Interactive Report
Education in the US
UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4, Quality Education, aims to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education while promoting lifelong learning for all by 2030. This includes providing safe and inclusive learning environments and equitable access to education at all levels, including pre-primary and technical and vocational programs. This means addressing the cost of college and student loan debt, access to early childhood development programs, rising student-teacher ratios in K-12 education, and in the wake of COVID-19, securing access to remote learning resources.
In the US, the 2015-16 school year was the first in which the majority of public school children were minorities, yet 79.3% of teachers are white. Additionally, the vast majority of teachers are women (76.5%). Being able to attract and retain teachers plays a huge role in the country’s increasing student teacher ratios as well as the lack of diversity in school staff. 14% of new teachers resign by the end of their first year, 33% leave within their first 3 years, and almost 50% leave by their 5th year.
Participation in and access to education in the US is tied closely to economic factors, with impacts throughout a person’s entire academic life. For example, 6.1% of children ages 3-18 lived in a household with no internet, limiting their ability to access resources like remote learning, a challenge that has become even more significant since the Covid-19 pandemic. The past 10 years have also seen a significant decline in college attendance, with the rising costs of tuition and the burdens associated with student loan debt creating a huge barrier for many people.
Use the tool below to view education-related indicators nationally or by state, as well as an overview of the more than 74,500 nonprofits organizations that work on addressing related issues in the US. You can also discover 399 products and services in our Tech for Good Directory related to student loan debt, K-12 and higher education, remote learning and other key areas of education.
* Percentage of high school dropouts among persons 16 to 24 years old. People who have received equivalency credentials, such as the GED, are counted as high school completers. Includes both noninstitutionalized persons (e.g., those living in households, college housing, or military housing located within the United States) and institutionalized persons (e.g., those living in prisons, nursing facilities, or other healthcare facilities).
Interactive Tool Sources:
- Students-Teacher ratio and Student Dropout rates: US Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Common Core of Data (CCD). 2019 and 2020 projections are from GC Insights Data Sciences Team
- Student Debt: EducationData.org
- Student Population and US Demographic Data: GC Insights Analysis of US Census Bureau
- Nonprofit-related data: GC Insights analysis of over 600,000 forms 990 filed with the Internal Revenue Service -IRS 2018-2020
- Annie E. Casey Foundation – Education Indicators
- Do Something – 11 FACTS ABOUT EDUCATION IN AMERICA
- Educationdata.org – College Enrollment
- Educationdata.org – Student Loan Debt
- The Atlantic – The Stigma of Choosing Trade School Over College
- Educationdata.org – Education Spending
- Federal Reserve – Student Loan Debt
- National Center for Education Statistics
- Education Week: Education Statistics – Education Statistics: Facts About American Schools
- SDG Tracker – SDG 4
- Global Goals – SDG 4