Release Date: Apr 04, 2008Contact: 888-249-NEWS
Chamber Commends Proposed Formula for Calculating Graduation Rates
Consistent Accountability is Key to Creating a 21st Century Workforce
Washington, D.C. - The U.S. Chamber of Commerce applauded the Department of Education today for proposing rules requiring all states to use the same formula to calculate high school graduation rates.
"Accountability is a top priority for our nation's education system and never has this been as evident as in the issue of high school dropouts," said Arthur J. Rothkopf, senior vice president and counselor to the president of the U.S. Chamber. "The Chamber recognizes that our nation must hold itself and its students to a higher standard to ensure that they succeed in school and beyond."
The rules - originally proposed by the National Governors Association - would require all 50 states, educators, and business leaders to endorse a common formula from the Department of Education and pledge to make information on high school graduation rates public, allowing parents to make accurate comparisons across states.
"It's time to close the loopholes that allow states to obscure information - such as graduation rates - and other statistical means to "game" the accountability system," he said. "Eliminating this ambiguity is part of the Chamber's recommendations to strengthen and improve the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB)."
"To continue to create a 21st century workforce we need consistent and accurate ways of assessing states' progress in preparing students," Rothkopf said. "The formula proposed by Secretary Margaret Spellings and the Department of Education is an enormous step in that direction."
The U.S. Chamber is the world's largest business federation, representing more than 3 million businesses and organizations of every size, sector, and region. For more information on the Chamber's education and e-commerce policies, please visit: www.uschamber.com/telecom.