Minnesota seeks to boost high school graduation rates

/ 14 March 2013 / eunice

Megan Boldt, Pioneer Press, March 13, 2013 – Minnesota is joining a national effort to boost graduation rates to 90 percent by 2020, state officials said Wednesday.

The state is one of five that are taking part in GradNation to close the achievement gap and raise four-year graduation rates. It’s an initiative of America’s Promise Alliance, started by former Secretary of State Colin Powell.

Minnesota’s four-year high school graduation rate was about 78 percent in 2012, about a 5-percentage-point increase since 2003. Students of colors made even bigger gains — 10 percentage points and 12 percentage points for black and Hispanic students respectively.

While Minnesota’s gap between students of color and their white peers is closing, it’s still one of the worst in the nation. About 84 percent of white students got their diploma on time last year compared to 51 percent of black students.

GradMinnesota is co-chaired by Lt. Governor Yvonne Prettner Solon and Education Commissioner Brenda Cassellius.