Massachusetts: Only half of Hispanic males graduate from high school on time
Only 62 percent of students in the state's urban school systems are graduating within four years, compared with more than 90 percent of their peers in the suburbs, an achievement gap that needs to be addressed immediately, Education Commissioner David P. Driscoll said today.
Graduation rate data released for the first time today by the state Department of Education also showed disparities by gender and ethnic and racial groups.
Of Massachusetts students who entered high school in 2002 and were supposed to graduate last spring, 83.5 percent of girls graduated, compared with 76.4 percent of boys. More girls than boys of every ethnicity graduated within four years. Hispanic males fared the worst, with only half graduating on time.
The data paints a striking difference in stability among the state's rich and poor communities. In wealthy towns such as Weston and Winchester, the student body changes little during their four years in high school. But mostly minority cities such as Lawrence and Holyoke lose as much as half the class to transfers or dropouts.
"This is a huge problem in America and we're sleeping through it," Driscoll said during a press conference in Boston. "You have to understand the challenges our urban areas face."
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