BPS Graduation rate increases for 6th year in a row
Graduation rates for Boston Public Schools (BPS) students have risen for the 6th consecutive year, according to data released by Superintendent Carol R. Johnson and the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. The four-year graduation rate, which accounts for students who entered the 9th grade in 2008 and graduated in 2012, shows 65.9% of the class graduated. Of the 2012 graduating class, another 15.2% of students remained in school. The graduation rate is the highest ever recorded by BPS and has increased steadily since 2007.
“These numbers show we are a district on the move, and our efforts to improve school quality are working,” said Mayor Thomas M. Menino. “When these students cross that graduation stage, a whole new set of doors open, putting them on the path for a lifetime of success.”
The graduation data also shows promising signs for minority students. Graduation rates for Black and Hispanic students have risen again, according to the data released today. The graduation rate for Black students is at a five year high (64.5%), while the graduation rate for Hispanic Students has increased for the 4th consecutive year (58.8%).
“The increase in our graduation rate proves that what we’re doing is working,” said Dr. Johnson. “While it certainly takes a village for our children to succeed, the real credit goes to the outstanding teachers who each day are working to help our students achieve at new heights. This day would not be possible without their passion and commitment to the young people of Boston.”
According to the new numbers, ten Boston high schools have exceeded the district’s 2014 Acceleration Agenda goal of a graduation rate of at least 80%. Perhaps the most impressive gains for the district are those of New Mission High School (Hyde Park), which has increased its four-year graduation rate more than 33 points since 2006. In 2012, 90.8% of New Mission High students graduated in four years, compared to just 57.6% six years ago.
Two alternative high schools, which serve students in academic-based, non-traditional settings, have also made impressive gains. Boston Adult Technical Academy (Dorchester) saw its graduation rate increase 24-points in six-years while the rate of students graduating at Greater Egleston High School (Roxbury) increased 22 points.
Six Boston high schools demonstrated graduation rates above 90%: Edward M. Kennedy Academy for Health Careers (Fenway) 97.3%; Boston Latin Academy (Dorchester) 95.8%; Boston Latin School (Fenway) 94.8%; New Mission High School (Hyde Park) 90.8%; TechBoston Academy (Dorchester) 90.5%; and John D. O’Bryant School of Mathematics and Science (Roxbury) 90%.
For the first time, the BPS five-year graduation rate reached 70%, which is an increase of more than two points from 2011. As with the four-year graduation rate, the five-year rate has never been higher and represents an almost six point gain from 2006.
BPS has invested in initiatives to keep off-track students in school even if they did not meet all graduation requirements in their senior year. Last August, nearly 200 students took part in the city’s annual summer graduation. Most of the graduates had participated in credit recovery courses over the summer that made it possible for them to fulfill the graduation requirements.
BPS continues to focus on supporting students on the verge of dropping out through dropout prevention initiatives and partnerships, as well as credit recovery programs throughout the school district. BPS, in conjunction with the office of Mayor Menino, is also supporting students beyond high school graduation. In 2008, Mayor Menino launched Success Boston, an initiative aimed at dramatically increasing the number of BPS students completing college.
Last week, a report issued by The Boston Foundation found that the number of BPS graduates entering and completing college has risen sharply in recent years.
For more detailed and school level information, visit www.bostonpublicschools.org/reports.