California Reports Increase in African American High School Grads; Dropout Rate Declines

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April 12, 2013 ‐ By Ann Brown
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When it comes to education, any improvement is move in the right direction. This is the case in California, where state officials just reported slight improvements in dropout and graduation rates and continued gains made by Latino and African American students

“Overall, the state dropout rate declined by 1.5 percentage points to 13.2% for the class of 2012, when compared to the class of 2011. For Latinos, the improvement was 2.1 percentage points; for African Americans, it was 3.1%,” reports the Los Angeles Times.

According to new data, the state graduation rate was 78.5 percent, an increase of 1.4 percentage points from 2011. The larger gains were among Latinos and African Americans.

The annual report, which is now in its third year, tracks individual students from ninth grade to graduation.

This comes as good news, especially since there have been “devastating cuts” made to the education budget.  “We must keep moving to ensure every California student graduates ready to succeed in the world they find outside the classroom,” state Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson in a conference call with reporters.

Looking at the stats for the City of Los Angeles, the data was also positive. The Los Angeles Unified School District saw a graduation rate of 66.2 percent, up 1.4 percentage points from 2011.

“For Latinos, the improvement was 2.4 percentage points. For African Americans, however, the graduation rate went down slightly by less than a percentage point,” reports the newspaper. The dropout rate was 20.3 percent, a decrease of  2.3 percentage points. The drop out  rate for African Americans fell 1.8 points.

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