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Jonathan Burman, Tom Dunn, Alan Ray
Statewide high school graduation results released today show that:
“The alarm bell is ringing louder than ever. The graduation rate must improve much faster,” Regents Chancellor Robert M. Bennett said. “Unless students graduate and continue their education, their lifetime earnings will not support their families or themselves. Our State will be less competitive. We know the potential for better performance is there. Schools leaders and teachers must focus on better connections to middle school, make high school more interesting, and call on higher education and business to partner. In this year and next, expectations will be much higher; resources have not only increased but must be focused on successful practice. Business as usual in low-performing schools is not acceptable. We know what works. The Board of Regents and the Education Department will help.”
“The statewide graduation rate has gone up only slightly
and is unacceptably low,” State Education Commissioner Richard Mills said. “We
need to act urgently now. There are some bright spots. Graduation rates of
African-American and Hispanic students have increased.
Results for the Big 4 Cities and for other categories and groups of students are included in the attached slides.
School districts have improved their record-keeping over time, counting more students. For example, schools first reported 199,000 students in the group who started 9th grade in 2000. A year later, they reported 210,000 students in that same group. The increase was due to better record-keeping. The 4-year graduation rates shown are based on the latest, more complete data from school districts. As a result, some of the results may vary slightly from graduation rates presented in 2005 and 2006.
Graduation rates calculated for the state as
a whole and for all need/resource categories (for example, the Big 4 Cities as
a group, New York City, High Need Urban/Suburban districts, Average Need
Districts, and so forth) include all students who began 9th grade in a
particular year (for example, 2002), no matter how long they remained in
school. However, under the NCLB accountability system in
A list of effective strategies that school leaders are using to improve graduation rates appears at the end of the attached slides.