AEI Report Finds Graduates of Protestant Private Schools Are Less Likely to Get Divorced and Have Children Out of Wedlock

A new report from the conservative think tank American Enterprise Institute concluded that those who attended Protestant private schools as children were less likely to get divorced and have children out of wedlock than their public school peers.

AEI’s Institute for Family Studies examined data from the Understanding America Study from 2015 and 2016, as well as the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, first conducted in 1997. They compiled their findings in a report titled “The Protestant Family Ethic: What Do Protestant, Catholic, Private, and Public Schooling Have to Do with Marriage, Divorce, and Non-Marital Childbearing?”

“Men and women who have been educated in a private school tend to be more likely to be married, less likely to have ever divorced, and less likely to have had a child outside of wedlock,” the report, released Wednesday, showed.

Sixty-three percent of adults who attended Protestant schools were in an intact marriage compared to just 42% of adults who attended public schools, according to the 2015-2016 study. The share of Catholic and secular private school attendees who were in an intact marriage stood at 49% and 53%, respectively.

The results of the Understanding America Study demonstrated a similar pattern regarding the differences in divorce rates among alumni of Protestant, Catholic, secular private schools, and public schools.

Forty-three percent of adults who graduated from public schools have been divorced at least once. The share of Catholic School alumni who have ever been divorced stood at 40% while the share of Protestant and secular private school graduates who have been divorced stood at 21%.

Among adults who attended public school, 26% have had a child out of wedlock compared to 16% of Catholic school alumni. Among Protestant and secular private school graduates, 11% said that they have had a child out of wedlock.

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SOURCE: Christian Post, Ryan Foley