The dropout rate for South Bend Community Schools has been reported as high as 50 percent and as low as 5 percent.
Monday night, the school board looked at some figures of their own.
School officials say the actual dropout rate is 19 percent.
The graduation rate for 2007 was about 60 percent. However, that does not mean the remaining 40 percent were dropouts. Nearly half were still completing credits, going onto a fifth year, or receiving a special ed certificate.
However, a 60 percent graduation rate is still lagging behind the statewide rate of 76 percent.
School administrators say the 20 percent figure is a lot more encouraging than 50 percent, but they've still got a long way to go.
“When you start talking about 50 percent of our kids are falling through the cracks, you know, how can we ever begin to get a handle on it? Twenty percent is 20 percent too much, we still have 20 percent that are just disappearing on us that we have to capture,” Superintendent Dr. Robert Zimmerman says.
A couple other statistics of interest presented:
Forty percent of the total number of dropouts from the school corporation are at Bendix Alternative School.
And while gender does not appear to be an issue, race does.
In 2007, 46 percent of dropouts were black, while black students account for 36 percent of the total school population.