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California Graduation Rates Continue Uptick, as Achievement Gap Narrows

High school graduation rates in California climbed for the seventh year in a row, state Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson, announced Tuesday. The class of 2016 had a record-high graduation rate of 83.2 percent, with significant gains for student populations that have historically lagged behind.

“Graduation rates have gone up seven years in a row,” Torlakson said in a written statement, “reflecting renewed optimism and increased investments in our schools that have helped reduce class sizes; bring back classes in music, theater, art, dance, and science; and expand career technical education programs that engage our students with hands-on, minds-on learning.”

The uptick this year is incremental  – only a .9 percentage point increase from the previous school year – but there been a major shift since 2010. In the seven years of consecutive increases, the graduation rate has increased by 8.5 points.