White and Asian-American students graduated at a higher rate in nearly every state across the U.S. compared with black and Hispanic students in the 2010-11 school year, according to preliminary data released by the Education Department. The report presents additional evidence that a large racial achievement gap still exists among students across the country.
Minnesota has a 42-percentage-point difference between graduation rates for white students (84 percent) compared with American Indians and Alaska Natives (42 percent). South Dakota has the highest gap, at 43 points, between white students (88 percent) and Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders (45 percent).
This is in comparison to smaller "“ though still sizable "“ gaps in states such as Arkansas (12 points) and Maine (13 points). Arkansas is also one of two states where American Indians and Alaska Natives have the highest graduation rate of all races and ethnicities at 85 percent. Black students in Arkansas have the lowest rate at 73 percent.
In Maine, 90 percent of Asian-American and Pacific Islander students graduate compared with 77 percent of black students.