State graduation rate exceeds eighty percent

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According to the recently released state report card on schools, South Carolina has a high school graduation rate of 80.3 percent.

Last year’s graduation rate was 80.1 percent. These report cards provide a progress report on how schools and districts are performing on the World Class Knowledge, Skills and Characteristics outlined in the Profile of the South Carolina Graduate. The knowledge and skills are reported through test score measures that indicate readiness for college using the ACT and readiness for careers using WorkKeys. The ACT Aspire tests in grades 3-8 are also designed to show student readiness for the college entrance tests they will ultimately take in high school.

State Superintendent of Education Molly M. Spearman issued the following statement regarding the recent release of 2014-15 state report cards for districts and schools: “I am very pleased to see that our high school graduation rate is 80.3 percent,” said Spearman. “We are going to continue boosting academic achievement and encouraging our students to excel. I am proud of how far we’ve come and I want to commend our students, parents, and teachers for their success,” concluded Spearman.

The new report cards also highlight a multitude of opportunities provided to students at each grade level. Among these opportunities are Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, and Dual Credit participation. The Career Center report cards are also reporting the number of students who have completed a Career and Technical course completion series called a “CATE Completer” and the number of students who have earned an industry certification. These metrics provide our business community information about the opportunities high school students are taking to prepare themselves for college and careers. In preparation for online testing in 2017, the report cards also provide information on district and school infrastructure progress for students.

Finally, the district and school report card narratives are focused on how our schools are working to build the life and career characteristics of integrity, self-direction, global perspectives, perseverance, work ethic, and interpersonal skills.

Due to Act 200, report card ratings for both districts and schools are suspended for two years, in 2015 and 2016. Districts and schools will once again receive report cards under a new accountability system for the 2016-17 school year, which will be released in the fall of 2017. The proposal for the new accountability system is due to the legislature by fall 2016.