1 in 3 Autistic Students Have No College Education Nearly a Decade After High School

Courtney Williams's picture
Tuesday, May 15, 2012

A new study found one in three young adults with autism had no post-secondary education or employment in the years after graduating from high school.

According to the researchers, autistic youth had a higher risk of not enrolling in college or finding a job than youth with other developmental disabilities.

The study, which was published in the journal Pediatrics, included approximately 2000 students with disabilities, and more than 600 people with autism spectrum disorders, specifically. The researchers said it the largest of its kind conducted to date.

The results indicated only 35 percent of autistic youth had attended a 2 or 4-year college, 9 percent received vocational education, and 55 percent had held paid employment six years after high school graduation. Thirty-five percent did not participate in post-secondary education or employment.

The rates were even bleaker immediately after high school – more than 50 percent of autistic youth had no post-secondary education or employment two years following graduation.


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