(St. Paul, MN)  --  It could be an improving economy.  The Minnesota Office of Higher Education reports the state's high school graduation rate reached its highest level ever last year.

photo by Chad Baker/Jason Reed/Ryan McVay

At the same time, there has been a slight decrease in the number of graduates who advance to college.  Sometimes, when the economy is strong, more graduates move into the workforce full-time, rather than taking college courses.

There has been a small increase in the number of graduating minority students who enroll in college the fall after they get their diplomas.