The Department of Education says Buffalo's four year graduation rate is at 54 percent for 2011, up nearly seven percent. The previous year, however, the district saw a decrease of six percent. Last year, the district attributed the dip in 2010 to a commencement academy for struggling students that lowered the rate.
The state Education Department released data Monday showing that 74 percent of students who entered high school in 2007 graduated in four years. That was slightly better than the 73.4 percent graduation rate for the class before it.
The results also show that large gaps - 27 percentage points - continue to exist between the graduation rates of white students and their black and Hispanic classmates, even though rates among minorities have gone up.
The department says graduation rates in three of the Big Five districts - Buffalo, Syracuse and Yonkers - have improved, while New York City and Rochester saw slight declines.