There are a lot of metrics in place that gauge the effectiveness of P-12 schooling in the U.S. and shine a particularly bright light on public schools, particularly when they are failing students. Dropout rates are just one of the factors taken into account when these numbers are calculated and tend to weigh heavily on the schools and districts who have low percentages. The same does not seem to be true once the high school years pass though. Compared to P-12 institutions, colleges and universities seemingly get a pass when it comes to dropout rates - perhaps because in the past, higher education was considered more of a privilege and less of a right. A college dropout was simply walking away from the assumed higher quality of life that came with the degree, but still had opportunity to excel without it.