Indiana’s Congressional delegation is asking Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos to pause implementation of the Department of Education’s new high school graduation rate formula saying it could have an adverse impact the Hoosier state.
The Department recently informed the Indiana Department of Education that high school “general diploma” recipients will no longer count towards the state’s official graduation rate.
Previously, the federal government allowed Indiana to count students who choose the “general diploma” track and the “regular diploma track” in its high school graduation rate. However, the U.S. Department of Education implemented new regulations this year that fail to allow Indiana to include “general diploma” track students in its graduation rate.
The delegation, led by Congressman Jim Banks (CD 3), believes the change in definition would have dropped Indiana’s high school graduation rate from 89% to 76% in 2016.
“This sudden and swift change in definition could have a significant negative impact on Hoosier families,” said Banks. “Indiana should be given time to adjust to the new guidance to avoid the negative economic and educational consequences associated with a sudden and steep drop in high-school graduation rates. All members of the Indiana delegation are committed to finding a solution, and I am hopeful that the Department of Education will work with us.”
The letter sent by the Indiana delegation asks the Department to allow current high school juniors and seniors to be allowed to complete their General Diplomas to give the state time to adjust to the new definition.
A copy of the letter can be found here.