Statement from Secretary Duncan on NCES Public School Graduates and Dropouts Report
"The new NCES report is good news. After three decades of stagnation, the on-time graduation rate for high school students in the 2009-10 school year [78.2 percent] is the highest it's been since at least 1974. It's encouraging that the on-time graduation rate is up substantially from four years earlier. And it's promising that high school graduation rates are up for all ethnic groups in 2010 -- especially for Hispanics, whose graduation rate has jumped almost 10 points since 2006.
"At the same time, our high school dropout rate is still unsustainably high for a knowledge-based economy and still unacceptably high in our African-American, Latino, and Native-American communities.
"As President Obama said in yesterday's Inaugural address, our journey to equality of opportunity is not yet complete. But as this report shows, we are making progress in our schools toward living up to the American creed of equal opportunity for all."