Graduation rates at Massachusetts public high schools increased for the sixth consecutive year, state officials announced this afternoon.
Some 84.7 percent of students who entered high schools in fall 2008 graduated last year, an increase of 4.8 percentage points from six years earlier, according to the newly released data.
State officials said that black and Latino students, who long have been the least likely to graduate, had among the highest increases in graduation rates last year, as well as students who are not yet fluent in speaking English.
“These are outstanding results," Mitchell Chester, the state's commissioner of elementary and secondary education, said in an interview. "In today's world a high school diploma is now a minimum credential. ... In fact, in most living-wage jobs you need to be educated beyond a high school level."