Utah’s High School Graduation Rate

News releaseUtah’s High School Graduation Rate Up 3 Percent;
Across-the-board Participation Fuels Growth

With growth across racial, ethnic and socioeconomic lines, Utah’s high school graduation rate rose 3 percent in 2013 to 81 percent. Graduation rate increases were even more pronounced among most the state’s demographic subgroups including:

  •  7 percent among black students.
  • 5 percent increase among Hispanic students.
  • 4 percent increase among Pacific Islander students.
  •  4 percent increase among American Indian students.
  • 3 percent increase among white students.
  • 4 percent increase among economically disadvantaged students.
  • 4 percent increase among students with disabilities.
  • 9 percent increase among English language learners.

Using the federally-defined four-year calculations, Utah’s high school graduation rate has risen from 69 percent in 2008 to 81 percent in 2013 and the dropout rate has declined from 29 percent to 16 percent over the same time period.

“Obviously this is great news for Utah public schools and even better news for Utah’s economic future,” said State Superintendent of Public Instruction Martell Menlove. “We think this is attributable, at least in part, both to better data collection by local school districts and charter schools and to making better use of data to drive policy and action in response to the graduation rate.”

Utah uses a four-year high school graduation rate that uses the same calculation method used in all other states and the District of Columbia. Nationally comparable data won’t be available, however, until sometime next year.

Utah also calculates a high school dropout rate. That rate dropped from 19 percent in 2012 to 16 percent in 2013. The dropout rate and graduation rate do not total 100 percent because some students complete high school through means other than a high school diploma (e.g., students with a GED, students with disabilities who have participated in alternative assessment, or students who have transferred into higher education or an applied technology college without graduating high school) and some special education students are retained in high school beyond their senior year.

Using the federally-defined four-year calculations, Utah’s high school graduation rate has risen from 69 percent in 2008 to 81 percent in 2013 and the dropout rate has declined from 29 percent to 16 percent over the same time period.
Those interested in more information about Utah’s high school graduation rate and the graduation rates for individual high schools and school districts can find more information online at www.schools.utah.gov/data/Educational-Data/Graduation-Dropout-Rates.aspx.
www.schools.utah.gov

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