March 1, 2009
In March 2009, the Virginia Department of Education will report new high school dropout statistics for the state overall and for each school division. The state report will identify, for the frst time, the number of dropouts over four years from a cohort (in this case, the class of students who entered high school for the frst time in 2004), rather than the total number of students dropping out in one year. The new way of calculating the dropout rate, when compared with re- sults of the prior approach, will make the rate appear more than four times higher in 2008 than in years past – and that is not the case. The new dropout rates will provide a picture of how many students from a single class of students drop out before graduating.
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