High school graduate percentage in Howard tops counties survey

December 12, 2003|BY A SUN STAFF WRITER

According to U.S. Census Bureau data, Howard County has the highest percentage of people holding at least a high school diploma out of the 231 counties studied in the 2002 American Community Survey.

The data, based on responses from a sample of households, show that out of 166,118 residents older than 24 in Howard, 158,021 of them - 95.1 percent - graduated from high school or received an equivalency certificate. The national average is 82.6 percent.

More than 55,000 Howard residents also hold bachelor's degrees and nearly 41,000 have graduate or professional certifications. About 2,200 people did not complete ninth grade, and 5,891 others dropped out of high school.

Elsewhere in the region, the data showed that 86.1 percent of residents older than 24 in Anne Arundel County had high school diplomas; 87.2 percent in Baltimore County; and 69.4 percent in Baltimore City.

Carroll and Harford counties were not included in the survey.

The data are often used to attract businesses looking for well-educated workers, which is "critical for economic development and for maintaining a strong and healthy economy," Census Bureau Director Louis Kincannon said in a statement yesterday.

The American Community Survey is a national review meant to show how communities are changing. Additional information and data profiles can be found at www.census.gov/acs/www.

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