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Lawmakers hope to raise minimum high school dropout age to 18

Lawmakers in Massachusetts are hoping to raise the minimum high school dropout age from 16 to 18. Credit: Wiki commons. Lawmakers in Massachusetts are hoping to raise the minimum high school dropout age from 16 to 18. Credit: Wiki commons.

Massachusetts lawmakers are hoping to raise the minimum age one can drop out of public high school from 16 to 18.

The Legislature's Education Committee will hear several bills Tuesday that would require students to remain in school until they graduate or turn 18, the Associated Press reports.

If the rest of the state's minimum age were to stay at 16, lawmakers still hope to raise it to 18 in the cities of Boston and Lawrence.

According to the AP, the committee approved a bill last year that would have raised the compulsory education age to 18 in two steps. However, it did not receive a vote from the full Legislature before the end of the session and therefore was not passed.

Public high school dropout rates in the Commonwealth have fluctuated in recent years. According to the Massachusetts Department of Education, the dropout rate from 2011-12 was 2.5 percent, a dip from 2005-6's rate of 3.1 percent.

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