New Jersey’s high school graduation rate increased to almost 90 percent in 2015, the fourth straight year that the statewide high school graduation rate has shown an increase.
The graduation rate was 89.7 percent in 2015, up from 88.6 percent in 2014. This is the third consecutive year in which the rate grew by at least a full percentage point, according to the New Jersey Department of Education (NJDOE).
Since New Jersey began seeing the results of an improved federally-mandated methodology for calculating graduation rates, starting with the class of 2011, the state’s high school graduation rate has increased by 6.7 percent. The federal methodology, designed to improve accuracy, tracks cohorts of students over four years, starting from the time they enter ninth grade.
“We should all be proud of the work our teachers and school leaders have done to help make sure our students have the opportunity to graduate from high school ready to take the next step in their lives,” said Commissioner of Education David C. Hespe in a statement.
New Jersey continues to narrow the achievement gap between various “subgroups” of students, according to the NJDOE. A summary of graduation rates by student subgroups is as follows:
- For the first time, African-American students graduated at a rate above 80 percent with 81.5 percent in 2015, an increase of 2.6 percentage points from 2014, when it was 78.9 percent.
- 82.8 percent of Hispanic students graduated in 2015, a 2.2 percent increase from the previous year of 80.6 percent.
- 94.0 percent of white students graduated in 2015, an increase from 93.5 percent in 2014.
- 96.5 percent of Asian students graduated in 2015, an increase from 96.2 percent reported in the previous year.
- Economically disadvantaged students graduated at a rate of 81.7 percent in 2015, an increase of 2.1 percent from 2014, when it was 79.6 percent.
- 74.0 percent of Limited English Proficient (LEP) students graduated in 2015, an increase of 2.9 percentage points from 71.1 percent in 2014.
- Students with disabilities graduated at a rate of 78.0 percent in 2015, an increase of 1.4 percentage points from 2014 when it was 76.6 percent.