OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) _ The number of Oklahoma students dropping out of high school was the lowest in five years last school year.
Still, almost five out of 100 students were dropouts.
Records show 8,614 students in grades nine through 12 dropped out of school last year. That's down from 8,969 in the 1999-2000 school year and a big decrease from the five-year high of 9,513 in 1996-1997.
The figures are one of several indicators in the new Academic Performance Index, which grades schools and districts on a 1,500-point scale. Schools will be required to improve their score each year.
The national dropout rate _ 4.8 percent in 2000 _ is the same as Oklahoma's.
Tulsa's rate fell from 9.8 percent to 8.5 percent _ a difference of about 155 students. Oklahoma City's rate dropped from 12.8 percent to 12.3 percent _ a difference of about 14 students.
Wetumka had the highest rate of 22 percent. State officials said the figure is artificially high because of a treatment program at the school.