Complete Indicator Profile of Education - High School Diploma or Equivalency - 18-24 Year Olds (HA2020 Leading Health Indicator: 25)
DefinitionPercentage of 18-24 year olds with a high school diploma or equivalency.
NumeratorNumber of 18-24 year olds with a high school diploma or equivalency.
DenominatorMidyear resident population of 18-24 year olds within the same calendar year.
Why Is This Important?Income, education, and financial resources are considered key social determinants of health. The lack of such resources limits individuals' ability to obtain health insurance, pay for medical care, afford healthy food, safe housing, and access to other basic goods. Children in poverty face greater morbidity and mortality due to greater risk of accidental injury, lack of health care access, and poor educational achievement. Early (or prenatal) poverty may result in development damage. Level of educational attainment influences employment opportunities and income, which in turn impact other social determinants of health, including access to health care. Education can have multigenerational implications that make it an important measure for the health of future generations.
Healthy People Objective ECBP-6:Increase the proportion of the population that completes high school education
U.S. Target: 97.9 percent
State Target: Healthy Alaskans 2020 Target: 86% for 18-24 year olds
Evidence-based PracticesAs part of the Healthy Alaskans 2020 health improvement process, groups of Alaskan subject matter experts met over a period of months in a rigorous review process to identify and prioritize strategies to address the 25 health priorities. Public health partners around the state are aligning work around these approaches adapted to Alaska's unique needs.
Expand and strengthen quality early childhood programs.
Research has shown that early childhood education programs have positive impacts on children's cognitive, emotional and behavioral outcomes. Additionally, there is some evidence of improvements in children's health and safety and positive effects on the parents of young children. Children enrolled in high-quality early childhood programs are more likely to graduate from high school, hold a job, and make more money and are less likely to commit a crime than their peers who do not participate. Early care and learning programs can buffer the effects of poverty and other stressors on our most vulnerable children. Quality early childhood programs that support the development of executive function and self-regulation skills, as well as support the reduction of toxic stress, offer lifelong benefits to both children and broader society. James J. Heckman, a Nobel Memorial Prize winner in Economics and an expert in the economics of human development, has proven that the quality of early childhood development heavily influences health, economic and social outcomes for individuals and society at large. There are great economic gains to be had by investing in early childhood development. In fact, every dollar invested in quality early childhood development for disadvantaged children produces a 7 percent to 10 percent return, per child, per year.
Isaacs, JB. Impacts of Early Childhood Programs. Washington, DC: Brookings Institution and First Focus. 2008.
National Scientific Council on the Developing Child: http://developingchild.harvard.edu/index.php/activities/council/
About James J. Heckman:http://heckmanequation.org/about-professor-heckman
Implement evidence-based practices that create safe and supportive learning environments in school.
Safe and supportive learning environments in schools include both the physical and aesthetic surroundings and the psychosocial climate and culture of the school. Psychosocial climate includes the physical, emotional, and social conditions that affect the well-being of students and staff. Supportive learning environments can also incorporate family and community involvement to more effectively respond to the needs of students. Students who develop a positive affiliation or social bonding with school are more likely to remain academically engaged and less likely to be involved with misconduct at school. (Simons-Morton B, Crump A, Haynie D, Saylor K. Student-school bonding and adolescent problem behavior. Health Education Research. 1999; 14(1), 99-107.) Students whose parents are involved in their education have greater academic achievement, better attendance, and lower risk behaviors. Community involvement can positively impact academic achievement and improve school related behaviors (source: Alaska School Health and Safety Framework).
Support basic education and GED preparation for young Alaskan adults (under 25 years old) who have not graduated from high school.
Support a comprehensive and integrated career and technical education system that aligns training programs and coordinates delivery to prepare the population for Alaska careers. This strategy is based on the Alaska Career and Technical Education Plan.
* Evidence Base and Sources for Strategy 2, Strategy 3, and Strategy 4 can be found at: http://hss.state.ak.us/ha2020/assets/EBS/HA2020_EBS25_HighSchoolGraduation.pdf
Related Relevant Population Characteristics Indicator Profiles:
Related Health Care System Factors Indicator Profiles:
Related Health Status Outcomes Indicator Profiles:
Graphical Data Views
Percentage of 18-24 year olds with a high school diploma or equivalency, all Alaskans, Alaska Natives, and U.S., 2005-2020
Data NotesHealthy Alaskans 2020 Target: 86% for 18-24 year olds
** indicates preceding years summarized for Alaska Natives or Data Not Available.
Includes those 18-24 years old with a high school diploma (includes equivalency) or higher education (some college, associate's degree, bachelor's degree, graduate or professional degree). Alaska Native data are available for 5-year estimates and is shown for the last year of the 5-year period. All Alaskans and U.S. from American Community Survey, 1-year estimates for table S1501 Educational Attainment, Population 18 to 24 years, 1- Less than high school graduate. Alaska Natives from DataFerrett for 3-year American Community Survey.
More Resources and LinksAlaska and national goals may be found at the following sites:
Maps of health indicators for various subdivisions of Alaska may be found at the following site:
Evidence-based community health improvement ideas and interventions may be found at the following sites:
Additional indicator data by state and county may be found on these Websites:
Medical literature can be queried at the PubMed website.
For an on-line medical dictionary, click on this Dictionary link.
Page Content Updated On 06/30/2015, Published on 06/30/2015