A Press Release from the State Department of Education
Governor Dannel P. Malloy, joined by Commissioner of Education Stefan Pryor at the annual Back to School meeting for Superintendents, announced yesterday that for the third consecutive year, Connecticut’s cohort graduation rate showed an increase, as the 2011-12 rate increased by 2.1 percentage points from the prior year.
Almost all subgroups evidenced increases, with students eligible for free lunch, students
eligible for reduced lunch, Hispanic students, and English Language Learners (ELL) all registering annual gains
greater than three percent.
“There is no doubt that the goal of improving our public schools is one that will be won over the long term,” said Governor Malloy. “But three consecutive years of increases in the graduation rate is a great thing, one for which all of our state’s educators should be proud. This is proof that when we invest in our children and our teachers, we can and will achieve success.”
"Success in college and career begins with a high school diploma,” said Commissioner Pryor. “We’re pleased that the rate of high school completion is growing, and that it has especially increased for lower income students. We must continue this positive trend and, at the same time, ensure that students are graduating with the tools and skills they need to succeed. Under the Governor’s leadership and working with the General Assembly, we’ve increased funding and support to our districts as they work to build upon these improvements.”
Students eligible for reduced-priced school lunch and those eligible for free lunch demonstrated the largest subgroup graduation rate increases of 7.0 percent and 5.9 percent, respectively. The graduation rate for Hispanic students increased 4.4 percentage points, while the rate for black students increased 1.8 percent points. The 2011- 12 rates also show that 3.3 percent more English language learners and 2 percent more special education students graduated in 2011-12 than did in 2010-11.
Despite these gains, significant gaps persist. The data indicated a 26.5 percent difference between students eligible for free lunch and those ineligible for lunch subsidies – Connecticut’s largest gap related to a single subgroup factor. Just 54.2 percent of Hispanic males and only 57.6 percent of Black males who are eligible for free lunch graduated high school within four years.
Graduation rates are calculated according to the Adjusted Cohort Graduation Rate method, which was developed by the National Governors Association and is considered to be the most precise method. These rates represent the percentage of students who graduated with a regular high school diploma in four years or less. It is based on individual student level data, excludes 9th grade repeaters, late graduates, and accounts for transfers in and out of the graduating class over the four-year period.