St. Paul, MN  ( KROC AM News) -  Minnesota’s statewide graduation rate was slightly higher last year.

The Minnesota Department of Education says over 54,200 students received their diplomas last year for a graduation rate of 81.9-percent. That’s up 7-tenths of a point from 2014, but officials note the graduation rate has risen 6.4 percentage points over the past 5 years.

The statistics also show significant improvements in the graduation rates for black students. Their four-year graduation rate reached 62-percent last year, which is up 15.6 percent from 2010.

The Rochester School District experienced a modest decline in its four-year graduation rate last year. The state education department report shows just under 1040 students in the school district were able to earn a diploma during their 4 years of high school for a graduation rate of 81.7-percent. The rate in 2014 was 83.5-percent.

The graduation rate among black students in the Rochester School District last year slid about a half a point to 65.6-percent after notching a 5-percent point gain the previous year.

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