A look at literacy in South Carolina
Facts from the U.S. Census Bureau
• 18.9 percent of S.C. residents between 18-24 years old have not graduated from high school
• 17 percent of S.C. residents over age 24 have not graduated from high school. Students who do not graduate on schedule are unlikely to finish their high school education.
• 5.8 percent of S.C. residents 25 and older have less than a 9th grade education – that’s 176,033 people.
• 10.5 percent of S.C. residents 25 and older have between a 9th and 12th grade education but no diploma – that’s an additional 318,680 people.
• 30 percent of high school dropouts 25 and older live in poverty.
Statistics from Kids Count
• South Carolina is ranked 45th in the nation for child well-being.
• 7 percent of S.C. teens are not in school and have not graduated from high school.
• 10 percent of S.C. teens are not in school and are not working.
• 24.4 percent of S.C. children between birth and 18 live in poverty –that’s 258,848 children.
Information from the National Center for Education Statistics (2011)
• 81.4 percent of S.C. students attend a Title 1 or high-poverty school that receives federal funding. ** Cocky’s Reading Express only visits Title 1 schools
• 39 percent of 4th graders have below-basic reading levels. Thirty-six states have better 4th grade reading scores than South Carolina.
• 28 percent of 8th graders have below-basic reading levels. Thirty-three states have better 8th grade reading scores than South Carolina.
• 54.5 percent of S.C. students are eligible for free or reduced school meals, an indicator of low family income. 4th grade and 8th grade students eligible for the meal program had reading scores that were 29 and 21 points lower, respectively, than non-eligible students. A similar performance gap exists between black and white students in those grades.