The Real Truth about Low Graduation Rates, An Evidence-Based Commentary

Research Report

The Real Truth about Low Graduation Rates, An Evidence-Based Commentary

August 31, 2004

Abstract

A growing body of research has consistently pointed towards the uncomfortable fact the nation is facing a crisis in high school completion. This paper builds on a series of recent Urban Institute reports and analyses that have examined high graduation rates in the United States and the new accountability required over graduation by the federal No Child Left Behind Act. In this commentary, the author attempts to clarify these issues and offer a foundation upon which to ground on-going policy debates, future research into the graduation and dropout phenomena, and the shape of the next generation of educational accountability systems.

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