- Associated Press - Tuesday, May 17, 2016

LOS ANGELES (AP) - New statistics from the California Department of Education show 82 percent of students graduated high school on time in 2015.

The data released Tuesday also show a continuing achievement gap among white, black and Hispanic students - though each group’s performance rose slightly.

Eighty-eight percent of white students graduated within four years, compared to nearly 79 percent of Hispanic students and about 71 percent of black students. The graduation rate for English language learners was 69 percent, up 4 percentage points.

The overall graduation rate was the highest yet recorded since the state began calculating the figure by how many students finish on time six years ago.

Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson says the numbers were encouraging, particularly since the rise comes as more rigorous standards are being introduced.

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