The distribution according to the period for graduation for the 1,936 pupils who graduate was shown by the summary lines of Table VIII. In the same table the non-failing graduates are included (but distinct). No pupil graduates in less than three years and none takes longer than six years; 9.8 per cent of the number finish in less than 4 years; 19.7 per cent take more than 4 years. The small number that finish earlier than four years may be due in part to the single annual graduation in several of the schools. Some of the schools admitting two classes each year graduated only one, and the records made it plain that some pupils had a half year more credit than was needed for graduating. Considering, however, that about 42 per cent of the graduates had no failures, they should have been able to speed up more on the time period of getting through. They were doubtless not unable to do that. But some principals hold the conviction that four years will result in a rounding out of the pupil more than commensurate with the extended time. More than 35 per cent of those who did finish in less than four years are graduates who had failed from 1 to 11 times. In the conventional period of four years 77 per cent of the non-failing and 64 per cent of the failing graduates complete their work and graduate (see p. 59, for the means employed). The percentages of non-failing graduates for each time period are given below.
THE PERCENTAGES OF NON-FAILING GRADUATES FOR EACH PERIOD
Time Period in Years 3 1/2 4 1/2 5 1/2 6 Per Cent of Non-Failing 80.4 50.0 46.5 19.3 13.3 .. ..
This continuous decline of percentages representing the non-failing graduates shows that they have an evident advantage in regard to the time period for graduating. Their percentages are high for the shorter time periods and low for the longer periods. But by reference to Table VIII we quickly find that the slight extension of the time period for the failing graduates is not at all commensurate with the number of failures which they have. The failures are provided for in various ways, as Chapter V will explain. No striking differences are observed for the boys and girls in any division of this chapter.
The percentages of graduates and of non-graduates that fail are almost identical.
The percentages of the failing pupils who graduate and of the non-failing pupils who graduate are identical (31.5 per cent); hence, graduation is not perceptibly conditioned by the occurrence of failure.
The non-failing non-graduates do not persist long in school, as compared with the failing non-graduates. The short persistence partly accounts for their avoidance of failure.
As the number of failures per pupil increase for the failing graduates, the time extension is not commensurate with the number of failures.