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LI Grad Rates Dip, West Hempstead Bucks Trend

While graduation rates on Long Island decline, West Hempstead High School sees three-year rise.

The West Hempstead school district was happy to report that, unlike others on Long Island, its graduation rates have continued to rise over the past three years.

When the New York State Education Department released data last Monday, it revealed that the percentage of students in Nassau and Suffolk counties who graduated on time in June 2011 was slightly down from the previous year.

The dip was small -- from 87.6 percent to 87 percent -- and was shrugged off by regional school officials, Newsday reported. However, according to the June 12 article, the stats shocked officials in neighboring Hempstead, which saw its high school graduation rate drop from 46 percent in 2010 to 28 percent in 2011.

" is bucking that trend with graduation rates on the increase," read a statement released by the district.

In 2008-2009, 89 percent of West Hempstead seniors graduated on time. That number rose to 91 percent for the 2009-2010 school year, and then to 95 percent in 2010-2011.

During that time, the percentage of students receiving a Regents Diploma with Advanced Designation "has remained fairly constant," according to the West Hempstead school district.

"The West Hempstead School District will continue to look for and implement innovative strategies to keep its students attending school, engaged in learning and developing a lifelong quest for learning," school officials stated. "We are proud of our graduates for the work they do in our classrooms and in our community."

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