Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Lowest Big District Dropout Rate? San Diego Unified

Dropout Rate
Click on chart for larger
version. Source: California
Department of Education.
Graduation Rates
New dropout and graduation rates for school districts across California show San Diego Unified School District with the lowest dropout rate among the state's large, urban school districts.

At 5.9 percent, the rate is far below the next lowest district, San Francisco Unified, which has 10.4 percent. The highest rate in the state is at Oakland Unified, with a 27.7 percent.

"For parents, this means that they can be confident that their child is receiving, in our district, as good an education as they can get anywhere in California," said Dr. John Lee Evans, Board of Education President. "Our schools are innovative. Our schools are creative. Our schools are accountable. And our schools fit into their communities."

Overall, the district's 83.7 percent graduation rate is 8.5 points higher than the state average.

San Diego Unified also showed gains in ethnic groups that have been a focus of attendance-improvement efforts. For Hispanic students, a nearly four percent increase was registered over 2009-10. The 75.8 percent topped the statewide average of 70.4.

For African-American students, the year-over-year increase is 4.4 percent, with the 80.3 graduation rate is 17.4 percent higher than the statewide average.

"This means that hundreds of young adults beat the odds and became high school graduates last year," said Superintendent Bill Kowba. "This district, our Board of Education and every staff member have made graduation a top priority."

The district has focused resources in recent years on improving graduation rates. This includes sending staff and volunteers to the homes of truant students during the first weeks of school, allowing online and other digital options for students to make up courses, and motivational events at schools. At-risk students are also targeted with extra counseling and support from volunteers.

News Coverage