ST PAUL, Minn. — The percentage of Minnesota students graduating from high school on time is increasing, and although the numbers aren't huge, it's where the successes are coming that have education officials feeling positive.
A report released Tuesday morning by the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) says 83.6% of the class of 2022 (58,586 students) graduated in four years, an increase of .2% from 2021. The biggest gains come from Black students (3.1%), American Indian students (2.5%) and those who identify as two or more races (3%).
In addition, MDE says 3,840 students from earlier classes also earned their diplomas, graduating five, six or seven years after starting high school.
“Our students, educators and school communities persevered through the challenges of the past few years, and their unwavering commitment to excellence resulted in improved graduation rates," said MDE Commissioner Willie Jett. "We celebrate this significant milestone and also recognize that there is still much to be done.”
State education officials say the 2021-22 school year was the second full school year impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Students graduating in 2022 were in 10th grade when the pandemic started and their 11th-grade year was their most heavily impacted year, as schools switched to new ways of learning.
The latest data also shows increases in the number of students receiving special education services, English learners and those eligible for free or reduced-price meals. The last category is moot with the recent passage of a law that ensures free meals for all Minnesota students, regardless of income level.
In a release layout out the graduation numbers, MDE says the 2022 gains "underscore the importance of ensuring Minnesota public schools have the funding and resources necessary to support and engage all students."
For more on graduation data and the trends and results for all student groups, check out the Minnesota Report Card, which is presented in an easy-to-read and mobile-friendly layout.
WATCH MORE ON KARE 11+
Download the free KARE 11+ app for Roku, Fire TV, Apple TV and other smart TV platforms to watch more from KARE 11 anytime! The KARE 11+ app includes live streams of all of KARE 11's newscasts. You'll also find on-demand replays of newscasts; the latest from KARE 11 Investigates, Breaking the News and the Land of 10,000 Stories; exclusive programs like Verify and HeartThreads; and Minnesota sports talk from our partners at Locked On Minnesota.
- Add KARE 11+ on Roku here or by searching for KARE 11 in the Roku Channel Store.
- Add KARE 11+ on Fire TV here or by searching for KARE 11 in the Amazon App Store.
- Learn more about the KARE 11+ app for Apple TV in the Apple App Store.
- Learn more about KARE 11+ here.
Watch more Minnesota politics:
Watch the latest political coverage from the Land of 10,000 Lakes in our YouTube playlist: