2015 GradNation Report on Progress of American Graduation Rates

American Graduate: Let’s Make it Happen is public media’s long-term commitment to supporting community-based solutions to the dropout crisis.  Supported by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), more than 80 public radio and television stations have joined forces with over 1,000 partners and at-risk schools across 30 states.  WGBY is an American Graduate Hub Station, and virtually all of our educational outreach supports cradle to career efforts to address the dropout crisis.

According to the 2015 Building a Grad Nation report released on May 13, 2015, “The United States is on pace to hit a 90 percent graduation rate by the year 2020.”   Among the report’s telling details, Dr. Robert Balfanz, research scientist at the Center for Social Organization of Schools at Johns Hopkins University, estimates that each future graduating class will need 300,000 additional graduates in order to reach 90 percent by 2020.  He identifies the following needs for these graduating classes:

  • Four out of five students needs to be low-income students
  • One out of three need to be African-American & Latino
  • One out of five English-language learners
  • 40 percent have to be students with disabilities

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