Statistics on Native Students

 
Following are demographics and statistics about our American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) populations and students.    
Notes: "AI/AN" means American Indian and Alaska Native. "NHOPI" means Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander. "Alone" means not in combination with any other race. "In combination" means in combination with at least one other race.
  

AI/AN Population (All Ages)

  • The U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey estimates that in 2012, there were 5,226,034 AI/ANs (alone or in combination), comprising 1.7% of the total U.S. population of 313.9 million. Among these AI/ANs, 2,563,505 (0.8%) were AI/AN alone and 2,288,331 (0.7%) were AI/AN in combination. (US Census Bureau, 2012 American Community Survey)
  • The population of AI/ANs (alone or in combination) increased by 27% between 2000 and 2010, compared to the 10% increase among the overall U.S. population. (Norris, Vines, & Hoeffel, 2012)
  • In 2012, the median age of AI/ANs (alone) was 31 years, compared to the median age of 37 years for the overall U.S. population. (2012 American Community Survey)
  • In 2012, the median income of AI/AN (alone) households was $35,310, compared to $51,371 for the entire nation. (2012 American Community Survey)
  • In 2012, 29.1% of AI/ANs (alone) lived in poverty - the highest rate of any race group - compared to 15.9% for the entire nation. (2012 American Community Survey)
  • Greatest Numbers:
    • In 2012, the 10 states projected to have the greatest number of AI/ANs (alone or in combination) were California (N=710,007), Oklahoma (511,353), Arizona (N=350,960), Texas (N=315,126), New Mexico (N=216,225), Washington (N=204,438), New York (N=187,058), North Carolina (N=186,442), Florida (N=145,804), and Alaska (N=143,610). (2012 American Community Survey)
    • In 2010, the 10 cities with the greatest number of AI/ANs (alone or in combination) were New York, NY (111,749), Los Angeles, CA (54,236), Phoenix, AZ (43,724), Oklahoma City, OK (36,572), Anchorage, AK (36,062), Tulsa, OK (35,990), Albuquerque, NM (32,571), Chicago, IL (26,933), Houston, TX (25,521), and San Antonio, TX (20,137). (Norris, Vines, & Hoeffel, 2012)
  • Greatest Percentages:
    • In 2010, the 10 states projected to have the greatest percentage of AI/ANs (alone or in combination) were Alaska (19.6%), Oklahoma (13.4%), New Mexico (10.4%), South Dakota (10.0%), Montana (8.1%), North Dakota (6.4%), Arizona (5.4%), Wyoming (3.9%), Washington (3.0%), and Oregon (3.0%). (2012 American Community Survey)
    • In 2010, the 10 cities with the greatest percentage of AI/ANs (alone or in combination) were Anchorage, AK (12%), Tulsa, OK (9%), Norman, OK, (8%), Oklahoma City, OK (6%), Billings, MT (6%), Albuquerque, NM (6%), Green Bay, WI (5%), Tacoma, WA (4%), Tempe, AZ (4%), and Tucson, AZ (4%). (Norris, Vines, & Hoeffel, 2012)


Tribes & Reservations

  • In 2010, there were 324 federally recognized American Indian reservations. ( US Census Bureau, 2011 )
  • In 2012, excluding Hawaiian Home Lands, there were 618 AI/AN legal and statistical areas for which the Census Bureau provides statistics. (US Census Bureau Geography Division)                      
  • As of January 2012, there were 566 federally recognized Indian tribes. ( U.S. Department of the Interior, 2012 )
  • In 2010, the 10 American Indian reservations with the greatest numbers of AI/ANs were the Navajo Nation Reservation, AZ-NM-UT (169,321), Pine Ridge Reservation, SD-NE (16,906), Fort Apache Reservation, AZ (13,014), Gila River Indian Reservation, AZ (11,251), Osage Reservation, OK (9,920), San Carlos Reservation, AZ (9,901), Rosebud Indian Reservation, SD (9,809), Tohono O'odham Nation Reservation, AZ (9,278), Blackfeet Indian Reservation, MT (9,149), and Flathead Reservation, MT (9,138). ( US Census Bureau, 2011 )               


Student Demographics (K-12)

  • During the 2010-11 school year, there were 378,000 AI/AN (alone) students in the U.S. public school system, comprising 0.7% of the total public school population. (Aud, Hussar, Johnson, et al., 2012
    • NOTE: During the 2005-06 school year, there were 644,000 AI/AN students (alone or in combination) in the U.S. public school system, comprising 1% of the total public school population (DeVoe & Darling-Churchill, 2008). The decrease between 2005-06 and 2010-11 is due in part to a requirement that schools now only count students as AI/AN if they are AI/AN alone.  
  • During the 2010-11 school year, there were 49,152 students in Bureau of Indian Education Schools. (Bureau of Indian Education, 2011)
  • During the 2011-12 school year, private school student enrollment was 0.5% for AI/AN (alone) students, compared to 71.2% for White (alone) students. (Broughman & Swaim, 2013)
  • During the 2010-11 school year, the states in which AI/AN (alone) students comprised the greatest proportion of the total student population were: Alaska (20%), South Dakota (15%), New Mexico (11%), Montana, (10%), and Oklahoma (9%). (Aud, Hussar, Johnson, et al., 2012)   
  • Between 2005 and 2011, the achievement gaps between AI/AN and non-AI/AN fourth graders and between AI/AN and non-AI/AN eighth graders did not change for reading, but increased for mathematics. (National Center for Education Statistics, 2012)
  • During the 2010-11 school year, 52% of AI/AN 3-, 4-, and 5-year olds were enrolled in part-day or full-day preprimary programs, compared to 67% of Whites (alone). (Aud, Hussar, Johnson, et al., 2012)
  • In 2011, 52% of AI/AN (alone) children lived in two-parent households, compared to 75% of Whites (alone). (Aud, Hussar, Johnson, et al., 2012)
  • In 2009, 19% of AI/AN 9th grade females received special education services, compared to the national rate of 7% for all 9th grade females, and 8% for White 9th grade females. In the same year, 27% of AI/AN 9th grade males received special education services, compared to the national average of 13% for all 9th grade males, and 13% for White males. (Ross, Kena, Rathbun, et al., 2012)
  • During the 2008-09 school year, 40% of AI/AN students attended a school that did not meet Adequate Yearly Progress, compared to 33% of White students. (Ross, Kena, Rathbun, et al., 2012)
  • During the 2007-08 school year, there were 741 public schools located in AI/AN areas, with 82,406 AI/AN students. (Common Core of Data, 2008)
  • In public schools with high AI/AN enrollment, only 16% of teachers are AI/AN. (Manuelito, 2003)


Attendance & Discipline (K-12)

  • The 2009-10 out-of-school suspension rate for AI/AN females was 6%, compared to 3% for White females, and 12% for AI/AN males, compared to 7% for White males. (Office for Civil Rights, 2012)            


School Crime & Safety (K-12)

  • In 2011, greater percentages of AI/AN students (40%) and NHOPI students (39%), than White, Black, or Asian students (23% each) reported that drugs were offered, sold, or given to them on school property.
  • In 2011, 47% of AI/AN and 31% of NHOPI students reported using marijuana anywhere, compared to 22% of White students. 
  • In 2011, 8% of AI/AN and 11% of NHOPI 9th-12th grade students reported being threatened or injured with a weapon on school property at least once in a 12-month period, compared to 6% of White students.
  • In 2009-10, 13% of schools with less than 5% minority enrollment reported cyber-bullying among students, compared with 5% of schools with 50% or greater minority enrollment.
  • In 2011, 12% of AI/AN and 21% of NHOPI students reported being in a physical fight on school property during the previous 12 months, compared to 10% of White students.
    • In 2011, 42% of AI/AN and 43% of NHOPI students reported being in a physical fight anywhere during the previous 12 months, compared to 29% of White students.
  • In 2011, 28% of AI/AN and 21% of NHOPI students reported carrying a weapon anywhere in the previous 30 days, compared to 17% of White students.
  • In 2011, 21% of AI/AN students reported alcohol consumption on school property, compared to 4% of White students.
    • In 2011, 45% of AI/AN students reported consuming alcohol anywhere in the previous 30 days, compared to 40% of White students.


Graduation & Dropout (K-12)

There are different ways to measure K-12 graduation and dropout rates. Click here for a report and explanation of the definitions and data provided here.  

Graduation Rate
All Students
White
Students
AI/AN
Students
 
Age Group or Grade
Individuals Who Count as Graduates...
Data Source
National Status Completion Rate (CPS) (Oct 2009)*
90%
(N=24,579,000)
94%
(N=15,818,000)
82%
(N=144,000)
 
18-24 yrs
Have a diploma or alternative credential
Averaged Freshman Graduation Rate (CCD) (2009-10)
78%
(N=3,128,022)
83%
(1,871,980)
69%
(N=34,131)
 
9-12th grade
Received a public school diploma in four years
*In October 2009, the AI/AN rate by race/ethnicity and sex was 85% for males and 80% for females.

Dropout Rate
All Students
White
Students
AI/AN
Students
Age Group or Grade
Individuals Who Count as Dropouts...
Data Source
Event Dropout Rate (2009-10)
3%
(N=514,238)
2%
(N=191,943)
7%
(N=12,044)
9-12th grade
Dropped out of public school in a given school year and didn't receive a diploma
National Status Dropout Rate (CPS) (Oct 2009)
8%
(N=3,030,000)
 5%
(N=1,188,000)
13%
(N=34,000)
16-24 years
Aren't in high school and don't have a diploma or alternative credential
National Status Dropout Rate (ACS) (Oct 2009)
8%
(N=3,167,400)
 6%
(N=1,261,000)
15%
(N=46,800)
16-24 years
Aren't in high school and don't have a diploma or alternative credential
Note: CCD = based on data from the Common Core of Data, CPS = based on data from the Current Population Survey, ACS = based on data from the American Community Survey.
 
Based on the Four-Year Regulatory Adjusted Cohort Graduation Rates for the 2010-11 school year (no data were reported for ID, KY, and OK) (US Department of Education, 2012) :
  • The states with the highest AI/AN graduation rates were: Tennessee (89%), New Jersey (87%), Texas (87%), Arkansas (85%), Maine (82%), and Alabama (80%).
  • The states with the lowest AI/AN graduation rates were: Colorado (52%), Nevada (52%), Oregon (52%), Alaska (51%), Wyoming (51%), South Dakota (49%), and Minnesota (42%).
  • In nine states, the AI/AN graduation rates were the same as or greater than the state average for all students: Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Jersey, Tennessee, and Texas.
  • In three states, the AI/AN graduation rates were the same as or greater than the state average for White students: Alabama, Arkansas, and Tennessee.  


Higher Education Access & Persistence

  • In 2012, 39% of AI/AN students who started in 2005 as first-time, full-time students at 4-year institutions graduated, compared to 60% of White students. (Knapp, Kelly-Reid, & Ginder, 2012)
  • In 2011, among students who took the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NEAP) test, 63% of AI/AN 8th graders had never talked to a school counselor during 8th grade about classes they should take in high school or about what they want to do after high school. (National Center for Education Statistics, 2012)
  • In 2011, 65,356 AI/ANs (alone) ages 25 years and older had a graduate or professional degree. (US Census Bureau, 2012)
  • In 2011, 19% of AI/AN (alone) students had a parent who had completed at least a bachelor's degree, compared to 48% of Whites (alone). (Aud, Hussar, Johnson, et al., 2012)
  • In 2010, 65% of American Indian males were employed while attending college, compared to 76% of White males. (Ross, Kena, Rathbun, et al., 2012)
  • In 2009, 29% of AI/AN 9th graders had counselors whose primary counseling program goal was to help students plan and prepare for postsecondary education, compared to the national average of 48%. (Ross, Kena, Rathbun, et al., 2012)
  • In 2009, 33% of AI/AN males reported that they expected to complete a bachelor's, graduate, or professional degree, compared to 56% of White males. (Ross, Kena, Rathbun, et al., 2012)

Student Enrollment at All Title IV U.S. Higher Education Institutions, 2011-12, Number and Percentage
All Students
White
AI/AN
NHOPI
Undergraduate and graduate combined
29,041,533
 
15,513,878
(53%)
252,314
(0.9%)
91,088
(0.3%)
Undergraduate only
25,205,671
 
13,415,629
(53%)
232,929
(0.9%)
82,394
(0.3%)
Graduate only
3,835,862
 
2,098,249
(55%)
19,385
(0.5%)
8,694
(0.2%)
Notes: AI/AN = American Indian and Alaska Native. NHOPI = Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander.
Data source: Ginder & Kelly-Reid, 2013

 
Students Receiving Degrees at 2-Year Title IV U.S. Higher Education Institutions, 2011-12, Number and Percentage
All Students
White
AI/AN
NHOPI
2-year institutions, public, private nonprofit, and private for-profit combined
671,252
 
407,100
(60.6%)
6,335
(0.9%)
2,364
(0.4%)
2-year institutions, public only
592,245
 
370,660
(62.6%)
5,689
(1.0%)
2,067
(0.3%)
2-year institutions, private nonprofit only
7,570
 
4,185
(55.3%)
120
(1.6%)
31
(0.4%)
2-year institutions, private for-profit only
71,437
 
32,255
(45.2%)
526
(0.7%)
266
(0.4%)
Notes: AI/AN = American Indian and Alaska Native. NHOPI = Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander.
Data source: Ginder & Kelly-Reid, 2013
 
Students Receiving Degrees at 4-Year Title IV U.S. Higher Education Institutions, 2011-12, Number and Percentage
All Students
White
AI/AN
NHOPI
4-year institutions, public, private nonprofit, and private for-profit combined
2,999,340
 
1,797,396
(59.9%)
17,907
(0.6%)
7,113
(0.2%)
4-year institutions, public only
1,676,032
 
1,056,014
(63.0%)
11,115
(0.7%)
3,298
(0.2%)
4-year institutions, private nonprofit only
971,007
 
589,351
(60.7%)
4,272
(0.4%)
2,160
(0.2%)
4-year institutions, private for-profit only
352,301
 
152,031
(43.2%)
2,250(0.7%)
1,655
(0.5%)
Notes: AI/AN = American Indian and Alaska Native. NHOPI = Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander.
Data source: Ginder & Kelly-Reid, 2013
      

Indicators of Higher Education Access and Persistence by Race and Gender*
All Students
White
Students
AI/AN
Students
Students who took any May 2010 Advanced Placement exam and received a score of 3 or greater
54% Female
61% Male
60% Female
67% Male
41% Female
48% Male
Students who were 2004 high school seniors and applied to college by 2006
87% Female
79% Male
88% Female
81% Male
84% Female
67% Male
Students who took the 2011 ACT and met or exceeded the college readiness score in all four subjects (English, mathematics, reading, science)
22% Female
28% Male
28% Female
35% Male
10% Female
14% Male
Students ages 18-24 years enrolled in college or graduate school in 2010
47% Female
39% Male
51% Female
43% Male
33% Female
24% Male
Students who started in 2004 at a 4-year institution and completed a bachelor's degree within 6 years
61% Female
56% Male
64% Female
59% Male
41% Female
37% Male
Students who earned a STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) bachelor's degree in 2010
22% Female
28% Male
23% Female
27% Male
21% Female
27% Male

Notes: *Values are presented for gender if available. AI/AN = American Indian and Alaska Native.