in Houston, Texas
$74 million spent on Texas community college students who dropped out; view the study and see state-by-state spreadsheet of taxpayer spending here
Thursday, Oct 20, 2011, 11:45AM CST
By Mark Lisheron
graduation cap

Texas community colleges spent 74 million federal and state tax dollars educating students who dropped out in the 2008-09 school year, according to a study by the American Institutes of Research.

In that year taxpayers footed a nearly $1 billion bill for community college dropouts across the country, a story about the study today by the Houston Chronicle says.

Houston Community College System spent an estimated $4.1 million for first-year dropouts. The Lone Star College System in The Woodlands spent $3.8 million, and San Jacinto College in Pasadena $3.6 million, according to the story.

Officials for the research institute say the study is meant to illustrate the cost of too few community college students getting degrees. Roughly 12 percent of the students who enroll in  community colleges in Texas get their degrees in at least three years and just a third of them within six years.

During a five-year period ending in 2009 federal and state taxpayers pumped $46.8 million into the Tarrant County College District in Fort Worth; $33.5 million into Houston Community College; $24.8 million into San Jacinto; $23 million into Collin County Community College in Plano; and $22.3 million into Lone Star College.

An Excel spreadsheet showing all of the federal and state tax funding for Texas and American community colleges can be found here.

Texas is second among all of the states in the amount of tax funding lost on dropout students. In the 2008-09 school year California spent $154 million; New York $59 million; Wisconsin $35 million; and Florida $33.9 million.
Contact Mark Lisheron at 512-299-2318 or or on Twitter at @marktxwatchdog.

Keep up with all the latest news from Texas Watchdog. Fan our page on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and Scribd, and fan us on YouTube. Join our network on, and put our RSS feeds in your newsreader. We're also on MySpace, Digg, FriendFeed, and tumblr.

Photo of graduation cap by flickr user Shoshanah, used via a Creative Commons license.
Wednesday, 02/08/2012 - 01:00PM

Thank you very much for showing this story because last year I was trying to click on it to read it but the people who had the story took it off the website from the Houston Chroncile but likes so they were hiding it to get more people to go to those colleges for money not for educational use. I too dropped out years ago because HCC and The Court Report Institute was using me to get more money and didn't teach me squat.

Karen Townsend | 7 years 8 months
"Patrick F. Kennedy is a career foreign service officer" -
Peter Corbett ✈ | 7 years 8 months
I'm at McCarran International Airport (LAS) w/ @almacy
KERA Public Media | 7 years 8 months
TONIGHT at 7pm on KERA TV: Presidential Debate: Learn more at PBS NewsHour.
PBS MediaShift | 7 years 8 months
Tech Snafus Make Bill O'Reilly/Jon Stewart 'Rumble' More of a Stumble (@kegill | @pbsmediashift) #rumble2012
Will Sullivan | 7 years 8 months
Great addition, been burned too much by bad subs. "Google Play Announces Free Trials For In-App Subscription Services"
TxDOT | 7 years 8 months
I-35W/North Tarrant Express #constantcontact
© 2019 TEXAS WATCHDOG and USELABS. All Rights Reserved. Terms of Use and Privacy Statement