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Dropout Rates in the United States: 2001

Christopher D. Chapman




4-Year Completion Rates

Four-year completion rates report the percentage of 9th-grade students who left school over a subsequent 4-year period and who did so with a high school credential. Put simply, it asks, “of those who left school, what proportion did so as a completer?” Similar to the status completion rate, those who are still enrolled in high school four years after entering 9th grade are excluded from the calculation. Using data from the Common Core of Data (CCD), an annual cross sectional data collection, 4-year completion rates are presented for public school students at the state level. Students earning a regular diploma, and students who meet modified graduation requirements established for special conditions are considered completers. Though considered valid credentials, students earning alternative credentials such as GEDs are not considered completers for this measure.

  • Looking at completers at the end of the 2000–01 school year, the 4-year high school completion rates ranged from 65.0 percent to 90.1 percent among reporting states (table 5).