Wednesday, the Georgia Department of Education released 2012 5-year and 2013 4-year cohort graduation rates. For 2012, in every subgroup – ethnic, socioeconomic, disability status and more – the Clarke County School District was above the state average.
“I am pleased that our subgroup performance exceeds the state average, but we still have much work to do in ensuring that all students graduate,” said Superintendent Philip D. Lanoue. “We are committed to closing the achievement gap, and certainly we’ve made tremendous progress with economically disadvantaged students – who graduated at a rate 8% above the state average.”
Indeed, the school district has been recognized as the state’s Title I Distinguished District for closing the gap between economically disadvantaged and non-disadvantaged students.
This 4-year cohort method is based on the number of students who graduate within four years, plus one summer. The 5-year method adds an additional year. The first cohort rate was given in 2011, and the district’s 4- and 5-year rates were both 66%.
For 2012 rates, Cedar Shoals was 73.4%, Clarke Central was 76.6% and Classic City was 27.6%.
For 2013 rates, Cedar Shoals was 75.9%, Clarke Central was 76.4% and Classic City was 20.8%.
“When comparing the increase from 4-year cohort to 5-year cohort graduation rates, it’s clear that our efforts to keep students in school are working,” explained Lanoue. “What this means is that students who need extra support are receiving it, resulting in more students overall graduating and ready to succeed in post-secondary education and career.”
The school district has used a number of targeted interventions that have resulted in increased graduation rates. These included the use of data-driven instructional practices, individualized meetings with students to ensure they are on track to graduate, offering multiple opportunities for credit recovery and utilizing graduation coaches, social workers and counselors to assist parents in supporting their children.
“I commend the work of all students, teachers, parents and administrators in helping us reach higher levels of achievement. In addition, I want to commend those at Classic City High School because we have students that graduate early and those that come back to school well after their fifth year. Receiving a diploma – on any timeline – is something that we celebrate,” said Lanoue.