AZ has highest high school dropout rate in the nation

Education

AZ has highest high school dropout rate in the nation

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Web producer: Lucy Valencia, Assignment Desk Editor

PEORIA, Ariz. (CBS) - It's a staggering number that gives Arizona a black eye and clearly reveals a major crisis in our education system. The state now has the highest dropout rate in the nation.

According to a report just released by the U.S. Department of Education, 7.8 percent of Arizona students didn't finish high school in 2010.

But that problem is nearly non-existent in the Peoria Unified School District.

District spokeswoman Danielle Airey told CBS 5 although it's a unified school district they're not uniform, meaning their goal is to meet the needs of every student.

Airey said being cooped up in a classroom isn't for everyone.

Foothills Elementary Arts Academy is one of 11 signature programs offered by the district that teaches students the basics through incorporating the child's interests in their studies

"They're not only going and participating in drama classes. they're doing dance, they're doing music, but they're also using those techniques to learn other skills such as math and science and social studies," said Airey.

Something else that makes the district unique is its My Life program.

"It makes sure that our students are set up for success by helping them set up a career path as early as seventh and eighth grade," said Airey.

A quality education begins with quality teachers. Airey told CBS 5 on top of a bachelor's degree, every instructor is required to be certified in the specific course they teach.

Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHOBroadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

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