Gov. Beverly Perdue and state education leaders say a new outside report on graduation rates is proof North Carolina is moving its public schools in the right direction.
Education Week magazine released a report Tuesday saying North Carolina's high school graduation rate is higher than the national average and showed the second greatest percentage improvement of any state from 1998 to 2008.
Perdue says the news should throw cold water on Republicans who have said the state's education system is broken. She says the GOP-led Legislature's budget currently on her desk cuts education too deep.
The Education Week report calculated North Carolina's graduation rate at almost 73 percent in 2008.