While the United States has made strides over the past eight years in improving high school graduation measures, the nation is still a long way from having accurate data for tracking progress in raising the proportion of students earning traditional high school diplomas, a report contends.
Written by Paul E. Barton, a veteran researcher at the Educational Testing Service, in Princeton, N.J., the study analyzes current and forthcoming methods for tracking graduation rates and finds them all wanting. Mr. Barton also calls on the federal government to regularly report a range of graduation rates, much as the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics does in publishing national unemployment rates. In addition, he questions the U.S. Department of Education’s plans to hold schools accountable for improving their four-year graduation rates.
A version of this article appeared in the January 28, 2009 edition of Education Week