Governor Dannel P. Malloy today joined Connecticut State Department of Education (SDE) Commissioner Dianna R. Wentzell to highlight the milestones the state has reached over the last several years.
Among the accomplishments and milestones highlighted Tuesday are:
- Connecticut's graduation rate is steadily rising - up 5.2 points since 2010 to 87 percent, which is higher than national average of 82 percent. Even more encouraging are the closing of the graduation gaps Connecticut has seen with more minority students and students with disabilities graduating in four years than ever before.
- Connecticut students continue to be among top readers in the nation, according to NAEP results.
- In 2015, almost 27,000 students, a 5.7% increase over 2014 - took 48,559 AP tests.
- Traditionally under-represented students posted gains in participation: 5.7% more black students took an AP exam; 3.7% more Hispanic students took an AP exam over 2014.
- From the 2009-10 school year to the 2013-14 school year, the total number of suspensions and expulsions in Connecticut has reduced by 17 percent.
- Expansion of the School-Based Diversion Initiative, which is having a real impact on keeping students engaged in school and diverting more students from the juvenile justice system.
- Since 2011, state funding to the Department of Education increased 24%, or over half a billion dollars ($595,485,244).
- ECS grants - the main education funding mechanism to municipalities - is up $173.2 million.
- To date, we have invested over $45 million dollars to support districts, schools and teachers transition to the more rigorous college- and career-ready standards.
- Getting ready to launch new school accountability system that focused on student growth, as opposed to a snapshot in time of how a student is performing. The new system also takes a more holistic approach to evaluating schools by incorporating non-academic measures like chronic absenteeism, access to arts education and physical fitness.
- This past fall, Governor Malloy announced that the SAT will replace the Smarter Balanced test for 11th graders, thus reducing over testing at the high school level and giving all students a chance to take this critical college entrance exam for free.