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article imageU.S. Cities Suffering From Low Graduation Rates

By Nawest Vazquez     Apr 1, 2008 in World
American high school graduation rates continue to disappoint. According to a report released today, 17 of the country's largest 50 cities had high school graduation rates lower than 50 percent.
The report was issued by America's Promise Alliance, and the lowest rates were found in Detroit, Indianapolis and Cleveland.
Big-city students are suffering the most. In America's large urban centres, only about half of the students who attend public school are getting their diplomas. Researchers found that students in suburban and rural public high schools were more likely to graduate.
The national high school graduation rate in the USA is about 70%. Approximately 1.2 million students drop out every year.
Colin Powell, former Secretary of State, is founding chair at America's Promise Alliance, and he weighed in on students dropping out.
"When more than 1 million students a year drop out of high school, it's more than a problem, it's a catastrophe," he said.
The report also found more troubling statistics. Students who attend public high school's in big cities face difficult prospects in making it on to college. In Detroit, only 24.9% of students in public schools graduated from high school. Indianapolis' public schools aren't doing much better, coming in at 30.5%, while Cleveland's graduation rate is 34.1%.
School district data from 2003-2004, collected by the U.S. Department of Education, was used by the researchers for the report.
To read the report from America's Promise Alliance, click here.
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