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More than 11 percent of seniors may not graduate

ACROSS MISSISSIPPI — More than 11 percent of the state’s high school seniors could be in danger of not graduating because they have not passed one or more standardized tests necessary to do so.

Of almost 28,000 12th-graders in Mississippi, The Clarion-Ledger reported yesterday that 3,295 still need to pass one or more subject-area tests to graduate. Of those, 446 are second-year seniors. The rest are first-time 12th-graders on track to graduate but who must pass one or more of the state tests first, and about a third of them are in special education.

The state Department of Education said it is stepping up efforts to help high school students pass the tests.

Superintendent Tom Burnham said, “We are requesting that each superintendent… make sure that their high school personnel meet with each parent of each student and make sure that parents understand the status of their children.”

The meetings should be documented so parents can’t say they didn’t know, he said.

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