High school completion rates in BC continue to trend upwards according to data released by the Ministry of Education.

Overall rates across the province are up to 84%, up from 83.6% last year.

That number isn’t high enough, though, says Education Minister Rob Fleming.

“To still have one in seven kids not graduating high school in this day and age is really letting down those kids who aren’t getting through school and also costing us enormously on our social and economic potential as a province.”

As for Indigenous and special needs rates, they have skyrocketed over the last decade, reaching 65.9% and 69.4%, respectively.

“Within those numbers, which is tremendous news, we’ve got some ways to go but we are moving in the right direction,” explains Fleming.

“I think our government is guided on adding more content that will help Indigenous students be challenged, be interested in school, there will be more First Nations language programs.”

In the Bulkley Valley, the completion rate is below the provincial average at 79%.

The number for Indigenous students is 65%, while special needs students is 61%.

The completion rate looks at the number of students who graduate within six years of the time they enroll in grade eight.