by Sarah Wood

To meet workforce demands, two national educational attainment goals have been introduced over the last decade.

In 2008, the Lumina Foundation pushed to achieve a 60% completion rate for post-secondary credentials and degrees among adults aged 25 to 64 by 2025. A year later, former President Barack Obama’s administration aimed to reach the same percentage but for adults aged 25 to 35 by 2020.

States have also begun to institute their own objectives, with more than a half adopting a goal similar to what Lumina has put forth.

In 2019, only 43% of all adults in the United States had completed a postsecondary degree, according to the Institute of Women’s Policy Research (IWPR).

With research indicating that targeting high school seniors would still result in achievement gaps, national and state efforts have shifted their focus to recruiting adult learners.

Currently, one in five adults between the ages of 25 to 64 hold some college credit but no degree. Of that number, 35% are parents with at least one child under the age of 18.

Given that these individuals make up a large part of the adult population, reengaging parents is vital to meeting national and state educational attainment goals, according to new IWPR research.

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