Data released Tuesday by the California Department of Education shows that 91 percent of San Diego Unified’s class of 2016 graduated, earning the district a record-high graduation rate and making good on a prediction school board members made a year ago.
The new data solidifies what was already considered a big success for Superintendent Cindy Marten and members of the San Diego Unified school board, who have held up rising grad rates as a reflection of their leadership.
Last year, school officials announced a projected graduation rate of 92 percent. Now, those numbers have been vetted by the California Department of Education and the official number is 91.2 percent.
“The students, parents and teachers of San Diego Unified should be immensely proud of this achievement. Not only did the class of 2016 achieve the highest big-district graduation rate in the state, they did it while we raised the requirements to graduate. Our students have proven once again they will achieve more when we ask more from them,” Marten said in a press release.
San Diego Unified wasn’t the only school district to see an increase. State Superintendent Tom Torlakson announced Tuesday the statewide graduation rate increased for the seventh consecutive year.
But the 91 percent number doesn’t show all the factors that came together to make the rate possible. For months, Voice of San Diego has been detailing the ways in which San Diego Unified achieved its unprecedented graduation rate. Whether it was revamping the courses high schools offered, allowing certain students to test out of requirements or losing low-performing students to charter schools, the district moved students toward its graduation rate in a variety of ways.
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Lucky for SDUSD there are only 7 people following this story. Undoubtedly, it's because the rest can't read.
It's also very interesting that this article challenges the typical talking points of anti-charter school activists who often claim that charter schools succeed only because they choose the best and brightest students. In fact it appears that the opposite is happening, and that the district is encouraging the lowest performing students to move into charter schools. I just wonder what is the actual graduation rate of the charter schools that those students are moving too, and how are those schools handling that?
"Still, starting with the class of 2016, graduating high school in California was made a little bit easier."
Hmm. Doesn't that clearly contradict Cindy Marten's quote that the achievement was made while increasing the requirements to graduate?
Any organization that gets to design the way it's performance is measured, measures it's own performance and displays the results will always look like Superman. Nothing new here.
Reducing the denominator is the oldest trick. It is closely followed by increasing the numerator. Do I have that reversed?