Oregon Public Broadcasting

Oregon's graduation rates ticked up slightly last year. But they're still pretty low.

OPB file photo

The numbers released Thursday show that 68 percent of eligible students got Oregon diplomas in four years last year. That's a slight improvement.

"I think these results are disappointing," says Crystal Greene, with Oregon's Department of Education.

Greene notes this is the first graduating class that had to demonstrate proficiency at reading, in order to graduate. She says it's possible some students stuck around for a fifth year to satisfy that requirement.

"If kids are staying in school and taking the time that they need to get to that level of proficiency - that's a good sign," she says. "Would we love for all of them to be able to graduate in four years? Absolutely."

The four-year graduation rates for students with disabilities and those with limited English went down last year. But Greene says the report shows students in those groups have largely continued for a fifth year, rather than dropping out.

This story originally appeared on Oregon Public Broadcasting.

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