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Using New Formula, NJ Sees Graduation Rate Dip

Using New Formula, NJ Sees Graduation Rate Dip
New calculation is "more accurate and useful."

State officials say high school graduation rates are lower in many New Jersey school districts because of a switch in the way the state computes dropouts.

The state released new rates for all public high schools on Tuesday, a day after announcing it was changing the way it calculates the graduation rate.

State education officials say the new calculation is more accurate and useful - and complies with federal standards. Schools will now use more sophisticated records to determine whether students who begin 9th grade but do not graduate four years later have dropped out, transferred or died.

The statewide graduation rate under the old formula last year would have been 95 percent. Under the new one, it's 83 percent.