Goals for the Common Good

LAUNCHED MAY 13, 2009

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Goals for the Common Good: Exploring the Impact of Education
Those who advocate for greater investment in education often make the economic
argument: more education leads to higher wages and is critical for financial stability and
independence. They’re right. Robust evidence supports the view that higher levels of
educational attainment are linked to higher incomes, less unemployment, less poverty,
and less reliance on public assistance.

But education is about more than just better jobs and bigger paychecks, important
though they are in making families and individuals more financially stable. More education
is also linked to better physical and mental health, longer lives, fewer crimes, less incarceration,
more voting, greater tolerance, and brighter prospects for the next generation.
More education is good for individuals who stay in school to earn their high school degree
or who enter and graduate college, but it is also good for all of us, paying big dividends
in the form of increased civic engagement, greater neighborhood safety, and a healthy,
vibrant democracy.

This report is a companion piece to the online Common Good Forecaster,™ a joint product
of United Way and the American Human Development Project. It takes a closer look at the
ten indicators featured on the Forecaster and makes the case for why education matters
to each of these critical areas.

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For media and all other inquiries, contact Eric J. Henderson: eric@measureofamerica.org | (718) 517-3606.