The National Center for Special Education Research at the Institute of Education Sciences has released a brief report from the National Longitudinal Transition Study-2 entitled Facts From NLTS2: High School Completion by Youth with Disabilities. There has been an increase over time in the percentage of youth with disabilities who complete high school. However, this mark of success is much more common for some youth than others. Those with sensory or orthopedic impairments finish school at much higher rates, for example, than youth with multiple disabilities or emotional disturbances.
Whether youth with disabilities finish or drop out of high school is associated with marked differences in their experiences in the early postschool years. A high school diploma gives graduates with disabilities access to a college education that is unavailable to most dropouts. Although the two groups are equally likely to be working for pay after school, dropouts work longer hours, on average, thereby generating greater income.