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America’s New High School Graduation Rate: A Reason to Acknowledge Progress
and a Reminder of Barriers that Students in Poverty Face
Arlington, Va. - Feb. 13. 2015 - Communities In Schools (CIS), the nation’s largest and most effective dropout prevention organization, today released a statement in response to the Department of Education announcement that the national high school graduation rate has hit a new record high of 81 percent.
“It’s clear that there is a strong commitment in this country to help more of America’s high school students graduate,” said Daniel Cardinali, president of Communities In Schools. "But now more than ever for a significant number students who live in poverty, there are still substantial barriers to graduation.”
“Communities In Schools is all too familiar with the challenges and barriers that these students face, which often times can occur both inside and outside the classroom. The lack of life’s basic necessities, like food, shelter, medical care and clothing can make it impossible for a child to focus on the academic subjects they need to succeed in school and achieve in life.”
The new data released by the Department of Education, shows that the U.S. high school graduation rate reached 81 percent during the 2012-2013 school year. It follows another recent report from the Southern Education Foundation which found that low income students are now a majority of the schoolchildren attending the nation’s public schools.
Communities In Schools (CIS) is the nation’s largest organization dedicated to empowering at-risk students to stay in school and on a path to a brighter future. Working directly inside more than 2,300 schools across the country, we connect kids to caring adults and community resources designed to help them succeed. We do whatever it takes to ensure that all kids—regardless of the challenges they may face—have what they need to realize their potential.