Annual Report 2002 - Cornell University
003 Selected Faculty Research

19 Dropping out?

John W. Sipple, Education, and colleagues surveyed school superintendents across Upstate New York (excluding New York City) and found that 28 percent of the school superintendents reported an increase in dropouts two years after the New York State Board of Regents implemented the more stringent Regents diplomas for all students. Forty-five percent of the superintendents reported an increase in dropouts among the lower-performing school districts. Because of the new standard for New York State, high school students must pass the Regents courses and exams, get a General Equivalency Development (GED) certification, or drop out. School districts are no longer allowed to give local diplomas. The survey found an increase in the GED option in half of the state's school districts, however, students are reported as transfers rather than dropouts. The survey points to the question: Is the GED a legitimate alternative to the Regents high school diploma? It also has implications for the Academic Intervention Service (AIS) program and for AIS staffing cuts in times of fiscal stress.

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