Rick Perry Creates His Own Dropout Rate

The Bill White Campaign provided Texans some cold, hard facts on the state of public education in Texas:  Rick Perry has failed our children.

Here’s the press release from Bill White.

Team Perry has responded to Bill White’s challenge with a lazy press release:

“As Gov. Rick Perry has said before, one dropout is one too many, but Texas does not have a 30 percent dropout rate as White has suggested. The percent of students who enter high school and eventually earn a diploma or equivalent, or who remain in pursuit of a diploma or equivalent, is 90 percent.”White didn’t suggest that there was a 30 percent dropout rate, he said it was a fact that Rick Perry does not know what happens to about 3 in 10 Texas students. It’s still a fact.

A recent study by researchers at Texas A&M’s Bush School of Government and Public Policy found that actual dropout rates could be nearly double what TEA reports.

So, about that 90 percent number, where’s the math?

According to TEA statistics, in the class of 2008, 341,712 students entered high school in 9th grade. 28,991 students joined in 10th, 11th and 12th grades for a total of 370,703 high school entrants. Of those, 237,536 students earned a diploma, 4,610 earned a GED, and 26,865 continued in school.

The total number of students graduating, earning a GED, or continuing is 269,011, which is 72.5 percent of the the total class of 2008, but Rick Perry never knows whether or not the students continuing ever graduate. Only 65 percent of the class of 2008 graduated or earned a GED.

“Rick Perry will say and do anything to get re-elected,” said campaign spokesperson Katy Bacon. “The fact is that Perry doesn’t know and doesn’t care whether 35 percent of the Class of 2008 ever graduated.”

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