June 22, 2006

This Issue
Vol. 25, Issue 41S
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With support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
A special state-focused online supplement to Diplomas Count. Features detailed data on high school graduation rates at the national, state, and district level. The report also examines how states calculate graduation rates, tracks state policies related to high school graduation requirements, and explores ways in which states and districts might improve graduation rates based on research.
Download a State's Full PDF Report:
Provides comprehensive data for individual states in the following categories: access to technology, use of technology, capacity of use, state data system, and data access and analysis tools. Also provides ways to compare multiple states' data in all categories, as well as states' overall grades.
About This Report
Diplomas Count: An Essential Guide to Graduation Policy and Rates, the first edition, provides detailed data on graduation rates across the 50 states and the District of Columbia, and in the nation’s 50 largest school districts. The analysis is based on the Cumulative Promotion Index developed by Christopher B. Swanson, the director of the EPE Research Center and a prominent expert on graduation data.
The Down Staircase
The economic and social prospects for young people who don't finish high school are increasingly bleak.
    Mapping Out High School Graduation
  • The EPE Research Center mapped 2002-03 graduation rates for public school districts across the nation. Low levels of graduation (shown in red) predominate in urban centers nationwide as well as in the largely rural communities of the South, Southeast, and Southwest. The national graduation rate is 69.6 percent.
    Charts: The High School Pipeline
  • The Cumulative Promotion Index (CPI) method of calculating graduation rates can be used to examine the high school pipeline. That is, we can estimate the numbers of students who fall off track for earning a diploma at various points between the 9th grade and the expected time of graduation.
Adding It All Up
Calculating graduation rates isn't an easy matter, but states are using a variety of methods that critics say obscure the extent of the problem.
Opening Doors
Keeping close track of students' progress would help more teenagers leave high school with diplomas.
Student Profiles
Staying on course to graduate isn’t an easy task for many students, report Indianapolis teenagers who have struggled.