Demographic Differences in Post-High School Experiences
Differences were apparent across youth demographic characteristics, such as gender, age, household income, and race/ethnicity for some post-high school outcomes but not for others. Postsecondary school enrollment; engagement in school, work, or training for work; and most aspects of independence, including residential arrangements, marital status, having driving privileges, and using personal financial management tools, were similar for young men and women with disabilities. However, some gender differences were apparent:
- Males were more likely than females to work full time (68 percent vs. 35 percent).
- Males were more likely than females to report carrying a weapon in the preceding 30 days (17 percent vs. 1 percent), to have been stopped by police other than for a traffic violation (59 percent vs. 38 percent), and to have been arrested (33 percent vs. 17 percent).
Youth with disabilities who came from households with different income levels were similar in several aspects of their post-high school experiences. For example, social and community involvement, residential independence, parenting status, and involvement in violence-related activities or with the criminal justice system did not differ significantly by the economic status of the households in which youth with disabilities grew up. However, youth from wealthier families3 were more likely than their peers to experience several positive outcomes:
- Those from households with incomes of more than $50,000 were almost twice as likely as their peers from household with incomes of $25,000 or less to have enrolled in 2-year colleges (57 percent vs. 30 percent), to have been employed since leaving high school (81 percent vs. 61 percent), and to have been productively engaged in education, employment, or job training since leaving high school (93 percent vs. 75 percent).
- They also were more likely to have a savings (69 percent vs. 40 percent), a checking account (60 percent vs. 29 percent), or a credit card (44 percent vs. 11 percent). Youth with disabilities in the highest income group were more likely to be reported to have electronic communication at least daily than youth from households in the lowest income group (33 percent vs. 13 percent), and youth with disabilities from the middle and the upper income groups were significantly more likely to have driving privileges than youth from households with incomes of $25,000 or less (75 percent and 83 percent, respectively, vs. 51 percent).
Similarities and differences also were apparent for youth with different racial/ethnic backgrounds.4 There were no significant differences across racial/ethnic groups in the likelihood of being engaged in school, work, or preparation for work; in postsecondary school enrollment; in social or community involvement; in parenting status; and in involvement in violence-related activities or with the criminal justice system. For post-high school outcomes that differed by race/ethnicity:
- White youth were more likely to have been employed since high school than their African American peers (80 percent vs. 47 percent).
- White youth were more likely than Hispanic youth to live independently (29 percent vs. 10 percent) and were more likely than their African American peers to have a checking account (55 percent vs. 24 percent) and a driver's license (79 percent vs. 49 percent).