New Orleans Dropout Rate Plummets 31%

Schools doing a much better job keeping kids in school!

The dropout rate[1] for New Orleans public school 9th-12th graders (RSD and OPSB, charters and direct-run) fell 31% from 2008-09 to 2009-10, dropping from 8.3% to 5.7%.

Since 2005, New Orleans dropout rate has been cut in half.

Pre-Katrina, New Orleans had one of the worst dropout rates in Louisiana, and Louisiana had one of the worst dropout rates in the nation. In 2004-05, 11.4% of the city’s public high school students dropped out.

Since 2005, both New Orleans and Louisiana have improved, but New Orleans is improving at a much faster rate than the state.  The New Orleans dropout rate has fallen 50%, while the state’s rate has dropped 27%.

Translation:  More teens in school

Put in real terms, this improvement means over 300 more students stayed in school in 2009-10, compared to 2008-09, and 677 more students were in school than would have been if we still had the 11.4% dropout rate of 2004-05.

Percent of Students Dropping Out of School
Grades 9-12

##

New Orleans Compared to the State

Aggregated Dropout Numbers and Percents


 

Year

Grades 7-8


Grades 9-12


#

%

#

%

Orleans

2004-05

534

4.6

2139

11.4

State

2004-05

2982

2.4

14210

7.0

Orleans

2008-09

385

6.1

989

8.3

State

2008-09

2453

2.2

12163

6.3

Orleans

2009-10

299

4.5

677

5.7

State

2009-10

1816

1.5

8704

4.6


[1] Schools and/or school districts give every student an exit code when they leave a school (graduated, transferred to another school, incarcerated, deceased, etc.). The Louisiana Department of Education (LDE) compares all students who were enrolled in school or a GED program as of October 1 in one year and are NOT enrolled as of October 1 the following year. Any student no longer enrolled who does not have a valid exit code is considered a dropout. Some of these students might re-enroll at a later date, so the annual dropout rate may overstate the dropout problem.
[2] While the data across grades is very reliable, there are inconsistencies in assigning a student who has dropped out to a particular grade. For example, if a student is enrolled on October 1 as an 8th grader but not enrolled the following year, depending upon the circumstances, the school or district might report them as an 8th grade dropout or as a 9th grade dropout.

4 Comments

  1. Posted April 5, 2011 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

    Thank God!

  2. Posted June 29, 2011 at 3:01 am | Permalink

    I have been following this for some while now and have found this very interesting. Have bookmarked it for future reference. I agree with what has been stated here.

  3. Quint jones
    Posted July 2, 2011 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    Statistics are the universal language. Numbers don’t lie.

  4. Anisa Parks
    Posted July 19, 2011 at 2:02 am | Permalink

    Quint, I would have to disagree with you. Numbers do not tell the whole picture. We have fewer kids in school. These numbers are not good. Since Katrina many kids didn’t return to school at all. What happened to them? No child should be left behind.

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