"Any program that offers a big improvement in the probability of urban students graduating is something we should be very interested in," concluded Manhattan Institute senior fellow Jay P. Greene.
And, based on Greene's latest findings, Arizonans should be all ears. Over 25 percent of Arizona high school students fail to graduate. Among those who do graduate, only a third are college-ready.
There are proven solutions. Greene's research has shown that thanks to the country's first and largest voucher program, low-income, inner-city Milwaukee children are graduating from private high schools at rates significantly higher than their peers who attend the city's typical and even most selective public high schools, 64 percent compared to 36 percent and 41 percent, respectively.
Greene's results add to a growing body of evidence that an open education marketplace helps all children succeed. The NCES finds that students from the lowest socio-economic quartiles who attend private school are three times more likely to attain a bachelor's degree than their public school peers. Those are probabilities too big to ignore.