News release

High School Graduation Rates Among Best in Canada

More students graduate from high school in Nova Scotia than almost any other province. A Statistics Canada study released this week shows Nova Scotia's high school graduation rate was considerably higher than the Canadian average and, at 81.1 per cent, was among the top three in Canada.

"We're pleased that Nova Scotia had one of the top three graduation rates in the country but we want to do even better," said Education Minister Jamie Muir. "A quality public school education is a critical foundation for success in the workforce and in life and for that reason, we'll continue to work hard to ensure every student who starts school, finishes school."

According to the study, which compared statistics from 1997-98 to 2002-03, Nova Scotia came in more than five percentage points above the 75.6 per cent national average. Prince Edward Island had the best record in Canada at 82.6 per cent, followed by New Brunswick at 81.5 per cent and Nova Scotia. Alberta's graduation rate was the lowest of all provinces at 66.5 per cent.

"When we meet with our education partners later this month, we will discuss how we can work together to create an even better education system," said Mr. Muir. "Part of the conversation will include exploring different options and opportunities to encourage more students to continue on in high school to graduation."

On Feb. 18 and 19 several hundred parents, teachers, school board members, government representatives and other education partners will meet in Truro to plan the next phase of Learning for Life, the government's plan to help all students succeed.

For additional information on the Statistics Canada study, see the website at www.statcan.ca .

FOR BROADCAST USE:

More than eighty per cent of students graduate from high school in Nova Scotia. That puts Nova Scotia well ahead of the Canadian average and in the top three provinces in Canada, says a newly released Statistics Canada study.

Education Minister Jamie Muir says while the province is pleased with the results, it wants to do even better.

Several hundred education partners will meet in Truro later this month to talk about the education system. They are expected to discuss ways to keep even more students in school until graduation.

In the Statistics Canada study, Prince Edward Island had the best record, followed by New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. Alberta was the lowest of all provinces.

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Contact:

Tara Walsh
Department of Education 902-424-8307 E-mail:
jal            February 4, 2005         2:25 P.M.