By Dr. Marciene Mattleman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Eighty-one percent of the U.S. high school class of 2013 graduated in four years, and that’s good news. However that rate been adjusted leaving out certain cohorts. Students with disabilities have a 63 percent rate of on-time graduation, a gap of 19 percentage points from the national rate; those with limited English 61, 20-points lower than the national average.

But the picture is more than numbers. While the national graduation rate is 73 percent for low income kids, eight percentage points lower than the national average, they range from 59 percent in Washington, D.C. to 85 percent graduating in Kentucky.

The June 5th issue of Diplomas Count, published by Education Week lists all states with comparisons from 2013, points out gaps between cohorts, ethnic and racial disparities as well. While those getting diplomas is at all-time high, huge numbers of our children have great needs, not easily overcome to be productive adults.