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Gazette opinion: Community key to preventing school dropouts in Montana - Graduation Matters!

August 5, 2010View for printing

The Montana Office of Public Instruction recently improved data collection on dropouts so the numbers are verified and more accurate than every before, according to Denise Juneau, superintendent of public instruction.

Unfortunately, as Juneau says, “Our numbers are going the wrong way.”

In 2009, 80.7 percent of Montana students who had started high school four years earlier graduated. A year earlier, the graduation rate was 82.6 percent and five years before it was 84.8 percent.

Juneau proposes a statewide campaign for communities to become involved in preventing local dropouts. She wants to model Graduation Matters Montana after Graduation Matters Missoula , a partnership involving Missoula Public Schools, the University of Montana, city and county government and the business community.

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