AUGUSTA (AP) — The number of Mainers earning high school equivalency credentials has jumped this year.

Through early November, 2,699 Mainers had earned their equivalency credentials so far this year. That’s up from 1,878 who earned credentials for all of last year and 2,258 who did so in 2011.

The Department of Education credits the increase to an aggressive awareness campaign before the state switches to a new exam administrator starting next year. The state is replacing GED Testing Service with a nonprofit called Educational Testing Service.

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