• 36°

Graduation success story

Laser-like focus on improving the graduation rate has produced good results in high schools across the country. According to data released Monday, the percentage of students graduating in four years has topped 80 percent for the first time in U.S. history and could hit 90 percent by 2020.
That’s a significant jump — from 71.7 percent in 2001 to 81 percent in 2012, according to the Build a Grad Nation report.
Now, what will it take to close the gap and make sure virtually every teenager earns a high school diploma?
Rowan-Salisbury schools have been part of this national success story. Some 82.9 percent of Rowan-Salisbury students who entered as freshman in 2009 graduated in 2013. Kannapolis City Schools’ four-year graduation rate rose to 84.9 percent. Both topped the statewide rate of 82.5 percent.
Even as the America’s Promise Alliance on Monday touted the progress made over the past decade, it raised concerns about the students who still are opting out of high school before graduation day. Graduation rates for low-income students range from 58 percent to 85 percent. In a letter included in the report, Gen. Colin Powell and wife Alma Powell, key figures in the organization, said the push is far from over.
“Despite our gains, far too many young people still do not earn a high school diploma, and the number of non-graduates remains alarmingly high among young people of color and those from low-income communities,” the Powells said. “In other words, a young person’s chances for success still depend too much on his or her zip code and skin color and too little on his or her abilities and effort.”
And too many students who do graduate are nevertheless unprepared for higher education and the workforce.
Raising the rate further and making sure a diploma means something may be the schools’ greatest challenges — even as they race to update curriculum, stay abreast of technology and address the countless other issues public schools face today.
The schools deserve the public’s appreciation for the progress they have made in the graduation rate — and our support for taking the steps necessary to keep pushing for higher numbers and better results. While some people make hay out of bashing the public schools, the schools are busy preparing children for the future.

Comments

Comments closed.

News

Nesting no more: Eagles appear to have moved on from Duke’s Buck Station

Business

The Smoke Pit leaving downtown Salisbury for standalone building on Faith Road

Education

Shoutouts

High School

High school football: Hornets’ Gaither set the tone against West

Local

Salisbury to show off new fire station

Education

Livingstone College to host virtual Big Read events this month

Local

City makes some appointments to local boards, holds off on others to seek women, appointees of color

Education

Education briefs: RCCC instructor honored by Occupational Therapy Association

Local

Second quarter financial update shows promising outlook for city’s budget

Columnists

Genia Woods: Let’s talk about good news in Salisbury

Local

City attorney will gather more information for Salisbury nondiscrimination ordinance

Education

North Hills planning to hold May fundraiser in person

East Spencer

Developers aim to transform former Dunbar School site into multi-purpose community development

Education

Knox student organizing event to get community cycling

Education

Decision on Essie Mae charter appeal expected Thursday

Nation/World

House passes sweeping voting rights bill over GOP opposition

Nation/World

Police uncover ‘possible plot’ by militia to breach Capitol

Nation/World

States rapidly expanding vaccine access as supplies surge

News

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper receives COVID-19 vaccine

News

North Carolina health officials urge schools to reopen

Crime

In letter, PETA criticizes Salisbury Police for K-9 video

Coronavirus

Three deaths, 29 new COVID-19 positives reported

Crime

Blotter: Bullet holes found in woman’s Park Avenue apartment

Crime

Man faces assault charges for domestic incident