Happy Black Girl News! High School Graduation Rates Predicted To Reach 90% By 2020

February 25, 2013  |  

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High school graduation rates are steadily rising for the first time in decades, reports Reuters. The “Building a Grad Nation” report revealed that graduation rates in Tennessee,  Louisiana, Alaska, California, Texas and New York have dramatically improved. The national graduation rate is also reported to have increased from 71.7 percent in 2001, to 78.2% in 2010. If the momentum continues at this rate, the report suggests that the United States could be looking at a 90 percent graduation rate by the year 2020.

“For the first time in 40 years, we have seen significant, sustained improvement,” revealed  co-author of the study, John Bridgeland.

Graduation rates  in Iowa, Wisconsin and Vermont take the lead among other states in the nation with nearly 90 percent of students graduating high school.

“Increasing the graduation rate has to be a purposeful exercise, something you’re driven to do every day. More and more, you’re seeing people across the country get it,” said Terry Glover, Supt. of Houston, Texas public schools.

Nevada and New Mexico are ranked the lowest, with only six in ten freshmen students predicted to earn their diplomas in four years. Unfortunately, the report also revealed that nationally, the percentage of high school graduating minorities still falls behind that of their White peers, with one-third of African American students and 29 percent of Hispanic students dropping out prior to graduation. The graduation rate of African American and Hispanic students in Minnesota remained somewhere near 50 percent in 2011.

“We need to look at these disparities head on,” said Brenda Cassellius, Education Commissioner of Minnesota.

Tactics administered by education boards in various states with improved graduation rates included: building new schools, allowing students to make flexible schedules, hiring more school counselors to check student transcripts for missing credits and sending emissaries to home the homes of truant students.

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