The 'New Normal' for Ga. Public Education in 2012

Marion Herbert's picture
Monday, December 19, 2011

As we prepare to enter 2012, what are the issues to resolve in educating all students to their capacity and utilize public education to advance the productivity of Gwinnett County, Georgia, and our nation?

One of the first issues to resolve is developing a standard measure of graduation rates state by state, regionally, and nationally. Why is this of such importance? Students who earn high school diplomas increase their options for employment in the global workforce. Dropping out before graduation reduces workforce opportunities.

In 2005, the nation’s 50 governors signed a compact that by 2011 all states would use the same definition of “graduation rate” and have robust data systems that replace estimates of ninth grade enrollment with actual counts.   

Having standard measures allows accurate counts of four-years graduates, GED recipients, other completers, dropouts, and students still enrolled for a fifth year. Having graduation rates comparable across districts, states, and the nation helps identify potential dropouts and ensure that students stay to graduate and compete in the global workforce.  

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