NPR sheds light on rising graduation rates

Posted by Meagan Banta-Lewis on
NPR developed a project around high school graduation rates.
Screenshot/NPR Graduation App

In the past decade, high school graduation rates have reached an all-time high of 81 percent.

National Public Radio took note of the rising graduation rates and looked at the factors contributing to the increase. A project that further investigates where these statistics are coming from uncovered a mixed bag of factors, including:

  1. Stepping in early to help kids.
  2. Lowering the bar so that students can find easier ways to finish school.
  3. Gaming the system by misclassifying dropouts to manipulate statistics

While early intervention and more personalized programs are beneficial contributors to further education, lowering standards and “gaming the system” are not helping these students in the long run.

William Brangham sat down with Anya Kamenetz, lead education blogger for NPR, to discuss the effects these measures have on students.

Several NPR stations, including some who do American Graduate work, participated in the national project.

This project brings to light the question of: How much work remains in order to reach a national goal of 90 percent?

Find the full project on the NPR website and watch the recent NewsHour report below.