(CNS) – The class of 2011 at Los Angeles County high schools had a 15.7 percent dropout rate, above the statewide figure of 14.4 percent, according to figures released today by the state Department of Education.
In Los Angeles County, 71.6 percent of the 129,368 students who started ninth grade in 2007 graduated, compared to 76.3 percent statewide. The county’s dropout rate was down from 18.9 percent for the class of 2010.
The statewide graduation rate was up 1.5 percentage points from the previous year, according to the Department of Education.
“Every graduate represents a success story in one of the most effective job and anti-poverty programs ever conceived, our public schools,” said Tom Torlakson, state superintendent of public instruction. “These numbers are a testament to the hard work of teachers and administrators, of parents and, most of all, of the students themselves.
“While they are a great illustration of all that is going right in California schools, they should also remind us that schools need our support to continue to improve so that every student graduates prepared for college, a career and to contribute to our state’s future,” he said.
Students who are not calculated as either graduates or dropouts could be either still enrolled in school or be non-diploma special education students. Some may have passed a high school equivalency exam.
For ethnic sub-groups in Los Angeles County:
– black students had a graduation rate of 63.5 percent and dropout rate of 23.8 percent;
– Asians had a graduation rate of 90.7 percent and a dropout rate of 4.7 percent;
– Hispanics had a graduation rate of 66.9 percent, while 18 percent dropped out; and
– white students had a graduation rate of 84.3 percent, and a dropout rate of 8.7 percent.
In the Los Angeles Unified School District, 61.6 percent of the 43,523 ninth-graders in 2007-08 graduated, while 20.6 percent dropped out. The district’s graduation rate was down slightly from 62.4 for the class of 2010, but the dropout rate was also down from last year, when it was 24.8 percent, according to the state.
In Orange County schools, 85.7 percent of the 42,099 ninth-graders in 2007-08 graduated, up from 82.8 percent for the class of 2010. The county’s dropout rate was 9.3 percent for the class of 2011, down from 12.3 from the previous year.