Arkansas's changing face | Arkansas Blog

Arkansas's changing face

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We just got an e-mail about the Southern Regional Education Board's report on education progresss in the South. Some of this has been released previously. Arkansas's high school graduation rate is ahead of regional and national averages, for example. But the graduation rates for white students and Hispanic females trailed national averages. Full details here.

But we've highlighted a stat that jumped out at us:

Rising numbers of low-income and minority students are a growing challenge for Arkansas education, the report shows. More than half of the state's schoolchildren now live in low-income households and are eligible for the federal school lunch program. Dramatic growth in the number of minority students also is expected over the next decade, making state efforts to close performance gaps among groups of students increasingly important.

By 2018, white students are expected to decline from 73 percent to 53 percent of high school graduating classes in Arkansas, while Hispanic students will grow from 5 percent to 27 percent. Improving student achievement among all student groups, including low-income and minority students, is vital to Arkansas' schools' compliance with federal No Child Left Behind requirements.


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