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Monday, March 01, 2010

High School Graduation Rates.....

...which of these is correct? According to a US Census report, in 2004, it was 85% while a report today from the Associated Press claimed it is just 70%.

Here are the two disparate claims:

From a U.S. Census Bureau press release dated June 29, 2004:
"Last year, 85 percent of adults age 25 and older had completed at least high school, an all-time high, the U.S. Census Bureau reported today. Also in 2003, 27 percent of adults age 25 and over had a college degree." Here is the link to the Census Bureau press release:

From the Associated Press news story dated March 1, 2010:

"By DARLENE SUPERVILLE, Associated Press Writer Darlene Superville, Associated Press Writer – Mon Mar 1, 11:00 am ET
WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama took aim Monday at the nation's school dropout epidemic, proposing $900 million to states and education districts that agree to drastically change or even shutter their worst performing schools. Obama's move comes as many schools continue to struggle to get children to graduation, a profound problem in a rich, powerful nation. Only about 70 percent of entering high school freshmen go on to graduate. The problem affects blacks and Latinos at particularly high rates. " Here is the link to the Associated Press news story today:

I can't explain the big variance between the Census department's 85% in 2004 vs. the Obama administration's 70% today. Perhaps the two reports are not apples to apples. However, I do believe inconsistent [perhaps unreliable] data prevents us from making smart, informed decisions and from properly allocating scarce resources.

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