At EduBubble, there is a very sharp comment on the notion that high graduation rates are necessarily a sign of educational success and low rates indicate educational failure.
I especially like this:
Let me propose this theory: a low graduation rate is proof that schools are doing a better job of helping kids find a stable adult life. In other words, those who can do, those who can’t sign up for another degree program and abdicate responsibility to the education industrial complex. The schools are filled with rudderless grad students and Post Docs waiting for some school to give them another assignment. In contrast, the lists of drop outs from for-profit schools are filled with people who found gainful employment in air conditioner repair, retail, computer maintenance or any of the 90%+ of the jobs that don’t really require a BA.
Read the whole thing.