The goal to graduate has become a bigger priority for high school seniors in Texas than ever before, and with more high schools focusing on college, Texas is finally catching up with graduation rates.
A recent study by the U.S. Department of Education shows that Texas' four year graduation rate has increased to 86 percent from 61 percent in the past year.
It is a finding that makes Central High School Associate Principal Richard Nash very happy.
"When we work hard and we're focused...we can succeed. I think showing these graduation rates is showing that we are doing what it takes for students to be successful," Nash said.
Texas tied with five other states for America's third best high school graduation rate. Nash says he thinks it's because more students want to go to college.
"In the last two years, we have had 100 percent of our seniors accepted into college, whether they chose to go or not is up to them, but we as a district and really statewide knowing that this data comes from the state, have put a greater focus on....preparing for college, preparing for the careers, and it's a mindset, it's opening their mindsets," Nash said.
While these rates are preliminary, Nash hopes schools continue to push students towards graduation.
"It's a focus we've had in fact in the last two years for sure...we have made a large push with our students wanting them to apply to college and when we say college we also want to mean it's the careers...it's the trade schools...it's knowing that you're going to graduate and have a purpose," Nash said.