California dropouts spike in first year of exit exam

Published: Thursday, Nov. 8 2007 12:19 a.m. MST

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The number of California high school dropouts spiked in 2006, the first year seniors were required to pass an exit exam to graduate, according to a report presented Wednesday to the state Board of Education.

The analysis found that 24,000 high school seniors dropped out in 2006, about 10,000 more than just four years earlier.

The information could give ammunition to lawmakers and others who have criticized the exam, as well as those who have lobbied for alternative assessments.

The firm that prepared the report, Human Resources Research Organization of Alexandria, Va., made several recommendations to the board, including a suggestion that California explore other ways for high school seniors to demonstrate proficiency.

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