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In High School Graduation, State Improves While State Charters Lag

Article originally posted online November 1, 2016 via gpbnews.org

In High School Graduation, State Improves While State Charters Lag    

By Grant Blankenship

Georgia continues to improve its graduation rate, but the state's high school experiments, its charter schools, are lagging behind.

Georgia’s high school graduation rate improved for a fifth straight year, according to data released Tuesday by the State Department of Education, to 79.2 percent. That’s about 3 points off the national rate.

Thirteen charter high schools have been around long enough to make the 2016 numbers. The eight schools chartered by local school boards averaged a 73 percent graduation rate. But at the five state chartered schools, on average, only 24 percent of students graduated. State Charter Schools Commission Executive Director Bonnie Holliday says to understand that, you have to take into account who the schools serve.

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