Washington employers are anticipating 740,000 job openings by 2021. We want to ensure that students growing up here are prepared to take advantage of the great opportunities ahead. That starts by understanding what jobs will be available, the requisite skills requirements, and the educational pathways to success. Check out our research and join the conversation about how we can all work together to better prepare Washington kids for success in Washington jobs.
The Future: Dramatic Job Growth in Washington State
Washington will have an unprecedented 740,000 job openings by 2021. This growth rate (1.7 percent from 2016 to 2021) is nearly three times the projected national growth rate (2014–24), and well in excess of Washington's historical average.
of students in the high school class of 2006 earned a credential by age 26.
of the high school class of 2015 projected to earn a credential by age 26.
of students in the high school class of 2030 attain a credential by age 26.
THE 70% GOAL IS AMBITIOUS, BUT THE HIGH SCHOOL CLASS OF
has already entered elementary school.
Credential Attainment: Where We Are, Where We're Headed
The high school class of 2030 entered kindergarten in 2017. To reach the 70% credential attainment goal for this cohort of students, credential attainment must increase by a full 30 points over projected performance for the high school class of 2015. This means annual growth in credential attainment must more than double, from 0.9% growth to 2% growth per year.
Leaks in Washington's Education Pipeline
Washington students fall behind early and fall out over time. A look at what happens to Washington students as they move through high school and into postsecondary education illustrates the challenge.
of our kids for the best jobs of the future is not good enough. Not for our students, not for our state.
THE HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATION RATE FOR HISPANIC AND BLACK STUDENTS WAS
or more lower than that of their white and Asian peers.
The Racial Achievement Gap
For the high school class of 2015, the graduation rate for Hispanic (73%) and black (74%) students was 10 points or more below that of their white (84%) and Asian (90%) peers. The gap was far wider for Native American students, 58% of whom earned a diploma. Racial achievement gaps grow after high school, leading to significant disparities in credential attainment.
THE HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATION RATE FOR LOW-INCOME STUDENTS WAS
lower than that of their more affluent peers.
The Income-Based Achievement Gap
The high school graduation rate among low-income students in the class of 2015 was 72% compared to a graduation rate of 91% for students from families with greater financial means. A similar achievement gap exists in enrollment rates of high school graduates in postsecondary programs at two- and four-year institutions.
of boys are projeted to complete a credential by age 26, compared to 47% of girls.
The Gender-Based Achievement Gap
Boys graduate from high school at a lower rate than girls, with 78% of boys in the high school class of 2015 having earned a diploma within five years of starting high school compared to 84% of girls. The gender-based achievement gap grows after high school. Just 31% of boys in the cohort are projected to complete a credential by age 26, compared to 47% of girls.
Raising postsecondary attainment among Washington kids will elevate individual earning potential, reduce unemployment and poverty, and save the state billions a year in social spending.
Click below to learn about some of the many job pathways available to Washington students.