Texas Leads the Nation in High School Graduation Rates

Commissioner of Education Michael Williams announced that the Texas high school on-time graduation rate set by the Class of 2014 reflects another all-time high for the state and marks the seventh consecutive year the overall rate has increased.

According to the Texas Education Agency (TEA) report, Secondary School Completion and Dropouts in Texas Public Schools, 2013-14, the graduation rate for the Class of 2014 was 88.3 percent, which is 0.3 percentage points higher than the previous record set by the Class of 2013.

 

Year

Graduation Rate

Class of 2014

88.3 percent

Class of 2013

88.0 percent

Class of 2012

87.7 percent

Class of 2011

85.9 percent

Class of 2010

84.3 percent

Class of 2009

80.6 percent

Class of 2008

79.1 percent

Class of 2007

78.0 percent

 

Out of 333,286 students in the Class of 2014 Grade 9 cohort, 88.3 percent graduated within four years. An additional 4.3 percent of students in the Class of 2014 continued in high school the fall after their anticipated graduation date and 0.8 percent went on to receive General Educational Development (GED) certificates.

Commissioner Williams – who has focused on efforts to close the achievement gap in Texas – also noted the Class of 2014 numbers reflect another year of ongoing improvement in graduation rates for African-American and Hispanic students.

Class

Year

African-

American

 

Hispanic

 

White

2014

84.2

85.5

93.0

2013

84.1

85.1

93.0

2012

83.5

84.3

93.0

2011

80.9

81.8

92.0

2010

78.8

78.8

91.6

2009

73.8

73.5

89.7

2008

71.8

70.8

88.8

2007

70.7

68.5

88.2

 

“The graduation numbers for the Class of 2014 tell us that school districts and charters are working every day to assure every student makes it to the finish line,” said Commissioner Williams. “Texas continues to lead the way in its efforts to close the achievement gap among all its student groups and other states are taking note of our efforts.”

Other notable graduation findings included in the TEA Secondary School Completion and Dropouts in Texas Public Schools, 2013-14 are:

  • Though the graduation rate for the Class of 2014 reflects some modest increases from the previous year, they are still all-time highs for Hispanic (85.5 percent) and African-American (84.2 percent) students.
  • Asian students in Texas had the highest graduation rate (94.8 percent) in the Class of 2014 Grade 9 cohort. White students posted the second highest graduation rate at 93 percent.
  • Females in the Class of 2014 Grade 9 cohort had a higher four-year graduation rate (90.4 percent) than males (86.3 percent).
  • The graduation rate for economically disadvantaged students in the Class of 2014 Grade 9 cohort was 85.2 percent, the same as the Class of 2013. However as a comparison, the graduation rate for economically disadvantaged students in the Class of 2009 Grade 9 cohort was 78.3 percent.
  • For the Class of 2014, the four-year graduation rates for students identified as English language learners in Grades 9-12 was 71.5 percent and for students in special education programs was 77.5 percent.

The U.S. Department of Education National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) is the federal entity with primary responsibility for collecting and analyzing data related to education in the United States. In 2003, the 78th Texas Legislature passed legislation requiring dropout rates be computed according to the NCES dropout definition.

A dropout is defined as a student who is enrolled in public school in Grades 7-12, does not return to public school the following fall, is not expelled, and does not: graduate, receive a GED certificate, continue school outside the public school system, begin college, or die.

The TEA report shows that the longitudinal dropout rate for the Class of 2014 Grade 9 cohort was 6.6 percent (the same percentage as the Class of 2013), with the rate for Asian students at 2.4 percent, white students at 3.6 percent, Hispanic students at 8.2 percent and African-American students at 9.8 percent.

Out of 2,238,400 students who attended Grades 7-12 in Texas public schools during the 2013-14 school year, 1.6 percent were reported to have dropped out, the same percentage as the previous year.

Other annual dropout findings from the report include:

  • For the 2013-14 school year, the number of dropouts in Grades 7-12 increased to 35,358, a 1.9 percent increase from the 34,696 students who dropped out in 2012-13.
  • In 2013-14, a total of 3,974 students dropped out of Grades 7-8, and 31,384 dropped out of Grades 9-12. The Grade 7-8 and Grade 9-12 annual dropout rates were 0.5 percent and 2.2 percent, respectively.
  • As in the previous year, the 2013-14 Grade 7-12 dropout rates for African-American (2.2 percent) and Hispanic (2.0 percent) were higher than the rates for white (0.8 percent) and Asian (0.5 percent) students.
  • The Grade 7-12 dropout rate for males (1.9 percent) exceeded the rate for females (1.3 percent) in 2013-14. More males dropped out from Grade 9 (5,458) than from any other grade. By contrast, more females dropped out from Grade 12 (4,235) than from any other grade.

source: http://tea.texas.gov/About_TEA/News_and_Multimedia/Press_Releases/2015/Class_of_2014_graduation_rate_sets_new_mark/

To read the complete Secondary School Completion and Dropouts in Texas Public Schools 2013-14 report, visit the TEA website at www.tea.texas.gov.

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