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    What are the high school graduation rates in the U.S.?

    Date: 06.17.10 | by Judge Tom.

    At its peak in 1969, the national high school graduation rate was 77%.  This was for a standard four-year diploma in public school districts across the country.  The report released by Education Week in June, 2010, indicates that the numbers are down from 69.2% in 2006 and 68.8% in 2007.  This translates to 11,000 fewer high school graduates in 2007 than one year earlier.  The report also notes that racial and ethnic gaps persist.  46% of black students, 44% of Latinos, and 49% of Native Americans did not earn a diploma in four years.

    On the other hand, the study identified 21 big-city school districts that posted higher graduation rates.  Five districts in California, Texas, Tennessee and Oregon outpaced expectations with students covering a broad spectrum of socioeconomic backgrounds.

    Photo by Ryan Stanton

    Success comes when schools are held accountable and interventions are promoted that address the problem.  A collaborative approach identifies what students need to learn and how to respond if they’re not progressing. The U.S. Department of Education will be holding states accountable for progress in 4-year graduation rates in 2011-2012.

    In March, 2012, a report called “Building a Grad Nation” was released indicating an increase of 3% for high school graduation rates between 2002 and 2009. Four education groups worked on the report that found the nation’s rate at 75.5%. Forty states saw an increase in the number of seniors completing their undergraduate education. Wisconsin led the way with 90.7% and Nevada brought up the rear with 56.3%.

    “Education is the path from cocky ignorance to miserable uncertainty.”  -Mark Twain, American humorist, writer.

    Judge Tom

    This post was written by Judge Tom. Judge Tom is the founder and moderator of AsktheJudge.info. He is a retired juvenile judge and spent 23 years on the bench. He has written several books for lawyers and judges as well as teens and parents including the recently published 'Teen Cyberbullying Investigated' (Free Spirit Publishing). When he's not answering teens' questions, Judge Tom can be found hiking, traveling and reading.

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