NJ Has Nation’s Highest HS Graduation Rate: Ain’t Right, Christie Says

87 percent of New Jersey high school students get their diplomas, giving the state the highest graduate rate in the nation according to a review, the Diplomas Count 2011 report, released today. Not only did the Garden State increase its pool of high school graduates by 11.1 percent from 1998 to 2008; it has the highest graduation rate among Hispanic and African-American students.

So what does our governor say about this achievement?

That number is too high!

The Star-Ledger reports that, rather than trumpeting an accomplishment most people (most governors) would be proud to brag about, Chris Christie’s administration has “quickly warned the state’s number of high school graduates will likely decline once a more rigorous, federally mandated method for calculating the statistic takes effect next fall”:

The figure calculated by the report’s authors falls 6 percentage points below the 93 percent graduation rate the state Department of Education published for the 2007-2008 school year. The report’s methodology reflects the type of rigorous standards Cerf calls for, according to Editorial Projects in Education Research Center, a nonprofit organization based in Bethesda, Md.

Cerf could not be reached to discuss the apparent discrepancy.

Speaking on behalf of a group Christie loves (publicly) to hate, the New Jersey Education Association, Steve Wollmer comments:

“The cup is always half-empty with this administration. Their agenda is to privatize education, and they never miss an opportunity to demean the achievements of our public schools, even when the criticism is unfounded.”

Indeed, the Christie administration’s less-than-glowing response to the report — which suggests that, contrary to what the governor says, NJ teachers are doing a fine old job of teaching students — shows how determined Christie is to recast figures, facts, etc. into what he wants them to say. Looks like he’s trying to take us all on another ride.

 

Photo by Bob Jagendorf.

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40 comments

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Duncan O'neil
Duncan O'neil4 years ago

But if the change in numbers is, largely, a result of people moving to another school than some schools should be posting graduation numbers that exceed that of the entering Freshman class.

There is no evidence of this! The highest performing schools in my district are posting rates in the low fifties or below. Such an event can not occur if the change in numbers is strictly from relocations.

Unless all of thoise students moved out of the state some school would have to show a higher than normal graduatuion rate, perhaps even higgher than 100%.

Original Message:

Duncan O'Neill said: "But it is the entering FRESHMAN class that is called the class of "entry year plus four". That is to say the class of 2011 entered school in 2007. The number of those that graduate is the proper rate."
When I was a freshman in high school, there were nearly 900 freshman. I graduated with 654 seniors four years later. I don't know the breakdown of all the numbers, but I can safely assume that some of them moved and some of them quit. Just because someone moves and attends another school in the same state doesn't mean they didn't graduate as seniors. ... But to not count those students in a state's graduation rate, simply because they didn't graduate from the same high school that they entered as freshman, doesn't make much sense. That could ignore hundreds of graduating seniors.

Duncan O'neil
Duncan O'neil4 years ago

"Today's conservatives don't believe in democracy, wanting all power to be in the hands of a small percentage of people at the top." Is a load of hooey!

Most of the "you have to do it our way", comes from the backrooms of the Democrat party. Not to say only they but mostly!

As for Democracy it is easy to see what the Democrats think of democracy, just look at what they are doing in Wisconsin!

Original Message:
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Hello,

Carole left a comment on the following article:


NJ Has Nation's Highest HS Graduation Rate: Ain't Right, Christie Says
Chris Christie is a very dangerous man. He is another neoconservative who wants to privatize everything we hold dear and turn this country into a backward nation that only benefits the rich. Today's conservatives don't believe in democracy, wanting all power to be in the hands of a small percentage of people at the top.

K s Goh
KS Goh4 years ago

Thanks for the article.

Sound Mind
Ronald E.4 years ago

That jerk

Marie W.
Marie W.4 years ago

HUH? Is he afraid of the competition already?

Emily M.
Emily M.4 years ago

Duncan O'Neill said: "But it is the entering FRESHMAN class that is called the class of "entry year plus four". That is to say the class of 2011 entered school in 2007. The number of those that graduate is the proper rate."

There are too many compounding factors that could skew these numbers. When I was a freshman in high school, there were nearly 900 freshman. I graduated with 654 seniors four years later. I don't know the breakdown of all the numbers, but I can safely assume that some of them moved and some of them quit. Just because someone moves and attends another school in the same state doesn't mean they didn't graduate as seniors. You're talking about turnover rate, which is correlated to graduation (students who stay in the same school, rather than move from school to school, are more likely to graduate). But to not count those students in a state's graduation rate, simply because they didn't graduate from the same high school that they entered as freshman, doesn't make much sense. That could ignore hundreds of graduating seniors.

David C.
David Connally4 years ago

@Gene W

Heard a clip from a Christie speech this evening (Thurs). Can't quote in its entirety but it included the pharse "about NJ's failing schools". Those commenter were quite intelligent,

Carole Dunn
Carole Dunn4 years ago

Chris Christie is a very dangerous man. He is another neoconservative who wants to privatize everything we hold dear and turn this country into a backward nation that only benefits the rich. Today's conservatives don't believe in democracy, wanting all power to be in the hands of a small percentage of people at the top.

wendi h.
wendi huffman4 years ago

noted