High School Benchmarks
With a COVID-19 Special Analysis
National college progression rates for high schools participating in the National Student Clearinghouse StudentTracker service
December 10, 2020
This eighth annual report provides the most current data on high school graduates’ postsecondary enrollment, persistence, and completion outcomes. These data are the most relevant benchmarks for monitoring and evaluating progress in assisting students to make the high school to college transition and earn a credential in a timely manner. This year’s report examines the immediate college enrollment for the high school graduating class of 2019, persistence for the class of 2017, and completion for the class of 2013. We continue to see large gaps between higher-income and low-income high schools on all fronts.
In response to the increasing need for up-to-date enrollment information during the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s report features a special look at how the pandemic has impacted the immediate college enrollment rates for the 2020 high school graduates.
COVID-19 Special Analysis Findings
- Preliminary data shows little impact of COVID-19 on high school graduation in the school year 2019-2020.
- However, far fewer graduates went to college immediately after high school this fall, declining by 21.7 percent compared to 2019 graduates.
- COVID-19 impacted immediate college enrollments rates considerably for graduates of high poverty, low income, and urban high schools.
- Public college enrollment among graduates of low-income high schools declined at disproportionately higher rates, revealing impediments to college access during COVID-19.