Graduation Rates

Governor Robert Bentley is calling for a guaranteed cost-of-living raise for education employees and a possible increase for workers at state agencies. In his State of the State address Tuesday night, Bentley proposed a 2 percent raise for the next school year. That's on top of the 2 percent received this year. He recommended a raise of up to 4 percent for state workers. But it is conditioned on the state taking in more revenue than expected. Alabama's state school superintendent says the state’s graduation rate continues to rise. According to Superintendent Tommy Bice, the graduation rate for the Class of 2013 is 80 percent. That’s up from 75 percent in 2012 and 72 percent in 2011. The state school board has set a goal of getting the graduation rate to 90 percent by 2020. Bice tells lawmakers in order to reach that goal, Alabama needs more teachers in grades 6-8, where he said dropout problems develop. He is asking legislators for $32 million to hire an additional 450 teachers for the middle school grades.

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