We’ve all heard about how important education is, how much more money high-school grads make compared to dropouts, how much more than that people with bachelor’s degrees make, and so on up the educational ladder. But it wasn’t until just last month that the federal government put two and two together and figured out that all that extra earning power could be taxed. The bottom line? High school dropouts cost us about $1.8 billion in lost tax revenues every year.
Dear Mr. Dad: Our 15-year-old son wants to quit school and get a job. He has struggled academically but we always assumed he’d graduate and go on to college. We’re trying hard to dissuade him from quitting, but he says he can always get a GED later. What can we do?
A: Having been in exactly the same spot as your son—and having a teenager of my own who’s talked about leaving school—I don’t think that most high-schoolers are mature enough to make decisions on their own about things that could affect them for the rest of their lives.