Education Initiative Launched to Achieve 90% Graduation Rates
Minnesota has one of the worst achievement gaps in the nation but education leaders are taking steps to change that.
The state has lofty goals for the next seven years, and today launched an initiative to help all students succeed.
Right now only 77 percent of Minnesota students graduate from high school, but a new initiative looks to raise the bar to 90 percent of students by the year 2020.
The Department of Education says they are on the right track. Over the last two years graduation rates have been improving for every subgroup. With the greatest gains coming from Hispanic students (5 percent), African American students (4.5 percent) and Asian students (4 percent).
"There is nothing more important to ensuring that every single student regardless of your background, regardless of your zip code or circumstance that you can graduate from high school ready and on time," said Education Commissioner Brenda Cassellius.
"Graduating from high school opens the doors of opportunity for our youth. It is critically important, it is a milestone for the success and long term livelihood of every Minnesotan," said Lt. Gov. Yvonne Prettner Solon. State Farm donated a grant of $50,000.
But the Department of Education hopes the Governor's budget passes, to provide more funding for early education, special education and English language students.
If the Governor's budget doesn't pass, the Department of Education says they will still pursue this initiative.