PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — A+ Schools, an independent, non-profit group that advocates for students in the Pittsburgh Public Schools, released its annual Report To The Community.

It highlights several promising trends. Graduation rates improved from 75 percent in 2011-12 to 79 percent in 2014-15 for Pittsburgh’s 9-12 and 6-12 schools. Also, 60 percent of the district’s seniors overall earned grade point averages that qualified them for the Pittsburgh Promise scholarship (2.5 or higher).

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However, the report also found a number of areas that need improvement.

“Sadly, 53 percent of our tested third graders, 924 students, are not reading at grade level by third grade,” said A+ Schools Executive Director James Fogarty.

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Also, the report says the high school suspension rate is 30 percent, and 41 percent of students were absent more than 10 percentof school days (chronically absent).

In two of Pittsburgh’s schools, approximately two-thirds of students were chronically absent, according to the report.

Click here for the full report.

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