Seven years later, Pa. high school graduation rate still at 80 percent

    A new report says Pennsylvania hasn’t made much progress in raising high school graduation rates between 2002 and 2009.

    Researchers say the rate remained essentially flat, from 80.2 percent in 2002 to 80.5 percent seven years later.
    The findings were presented today at the Grad Nation summit in Washington. The event was organized by the children’s advocacy group America’s Promise Alliance, which was founded by former Secretary of State Colin Powell.

    The group seeks a national 90 percent graduation rate by 2020. Researchers say it’s now at 75 percent, following a 3.5 percentage point increase from 2001 to 2009.

    To meet the 90 percent goal in Pennsylvania, 15,000 more students must receive diplomas in 2020 than in 2009.

    A state Education Department spokesman could not immediately be reached for comment.

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