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New formula means graduation rates tumble

Graduation rates in Brewton and Escambia County dropped this year — a trend seen across the state after the Alabama Department of Education changed its formula for calculating the rate.

Brewton City Schools’ rate was 86 percent. Escambia County’s rate was 74 percent, just shy of the state average of 75 percent. Individual school rates were not available.

Rates are now calculated on a four-year cohort — meaning they account for the percentage of those who started high school as freshmen and graduate on time in four years.

The rate does not account for those who earn a GED. Students who leave the school system but are not tracked elsewhere cannot be figured into the graduation rate.

By comparison, Brewton City’s rate in 2011 was 94 percent; Escambia County’s was 85 percent.