Last week, the state Department of Public Instruction announced that the four-year graduation rate reached a record high 82.5 percent this year. But expect more sobering news this fall, Atkinson said, when DPI releases the results of English/language arts and math tests based on new Common Core standards.
Student scores drop whenever new tests are introduced, she said.
In a wide-ranging session with journalists on Monday, Atkinson talked about issues and challenges facing public education. Here are highlights of her conversation.