The number of new high school (HS) graduates is projected to steadily increase for most parts of the country through 2022, with the exception of the New England, Mid Atlantic, parts of East North Central and South Central regions, California and Alaska, which will see slow declines.
The Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education predicts that the U.S. as a whole will see an increase of 10%. States like Nevada, Utah, Texas, and Florida will have the highest growth of new HS graduates, ranging from 25-40%. Louisiana, New York, Vermont, Michigan, and Alaska will see the biggest decreases ─ of 10-11%. Illinois’ HS graduation rate is expected to decline by 5%, ranking us 38th nationwide. Nevada was ranked highest, with an increase of 40%, while Louisiana and New York fell to the bottom with a decline of 11%.
States with projected declines must try to graduate a greater proportion of their high schools students by critically assessing school performance, the achievement gaps of students as well as schools, and the implications these factors have on the public school system and quality of life that results from education.
To view the projected changes in new high school graduation rates through 2022, see the Almanac of Higher Education 2011 from the Chronicle of Higher Education.