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Federal High School Graduation Rate Policies and the Impact on States: Tennessee

Mar 14, 2009


For too long, inaccurate data, misleading graduation and dropout calculations, and inadequate accountability systems at the state and federal levels have obscured low high school graduation rates. In October 2008, the U.S. Department of Education released regulations that change requirements for states’ calculations, reporting, and accountability systems for graduation rates under the No Child Left Behind Act. Although these regulations, offer hope for significant improvement, some of their provisions—particularly around accountability goals for increasing graduation rates—leave room for considerable variation across states that could undermine accountability for graduation rates. These state briefs outline the current high school graduation policies in a state and summarize the changes the new regulations would make. They also highlight the policy concerns and hurdles that are unique to the state and must still be addressed.

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Every Child a Graduate. Every Child Prepared for Life.