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Iowa's Grad Rate for English-Learners Improves

The rate of English-language learners graduating from Iowa high schools in four years increased from 64 percent to 73 percent between 2009 and 2010. That's compared to a graduation rate of 88.8 percent for all Iowa students in 2010, the state Department of Education announced yesterday.

The department credited improvements to programs for English-language learners, ranging from getting parents involved to ensuring that educators who teach them are competent.

I wrote stories for Education Week last year and in 2009 about how some states didn't have the capacity in their data systems to calculate a statewide graduation rate for English-language learners, even though it's required by the No Child Left Behind Act. And the graduation rates for ELLs that were reported by some states were really low, compared to all students.

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