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VA law prevents utility shutoffs in extreme circumstances; MI construction industry responds to a high number of worker suicides; 500,000 still without power or water in the Houston area; KY experts: Children, and babies at higher risk for heat illness.

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The House passes the SAVE Act, but fails to hold Attorney General Merrick Garland in inherent contempt of Congress, and a proposed federal budget could doom much-needed public services.

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Enticing remote workers to move is a new business strategy in rural America, Eastern Kentucky preservationists want to save the 20th century home of a trailblazing coal miner, and a rule change could help small meat and poultry growers and consumers.

Report: ID Makes Big Jump in Higher-Education Attainment

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Wednesday, February 1, 2023   

Idaho and the rest of the country are making progress getting higher education to more people.

A new report from Lumina Foundation finds nearly 54% of working-age Americans have earned a degree or certificate after high school, which the Foundation said is key to getting a good job in today's economy.

Idaho is slightly below the national average, at about 52%.

Courtney Brown, vice president of impact and planning for Lumina Foundation, said the state achieved one of the highest gains in recent years.

"Idaho, Mississippi, South Dakota, Utah and Vermont, they had the largest percentage-point increase in attainment from 2019 to 2021," Brown reported.

Idaho's higher-education attainment rate climbed from about 46% in 2019 to 52% in 2021. While states have made progress, Brown explained there is still more they need to do to reach the organization's goal of 60% of Americans earning a degree or certificate by 2025. The Idaho State Board of Education has also set the goal for people ages 25 to 34.

But the country has made immense progress since Lumina began collecting data on higher-education attainment in 2009. Brown cited a few reasons, including the fact states are putting a greater emphasis on these goals, and also how colleges and universities approach their students.

"More institutions are focused on the whole student and focused on today's students, not just thinking about 18-year-olds straight out of high school, staying on a four-year campus," Brown observed. "They're really concerned about adult learners, and setting up programs for adult learners, ensuring that they're serving them better."

Brown also noted there is greater racial equity in higher-education attainment. Still, Black, Hispanic and Native American populations trail far behind their white and Asian peers. In Idaho, the Hispanic population fares the worst, with only about 21% having earned a degree or other kind of certificate in 2021.

Support for this reporting was provided by Lumina Foundation.


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