District continues to elevate graduation rate beyond state

Thursday, January 17, 2019 - 12:00pm
five star proud

All district traditional high schools surpass state for second consecutive year

Adams 12 Five Star Schools four-year on-time graduation rate continues to rise, reaching 84.5 percent* for the Class of 2018. This is up more than 11 percentage points from 2010, making it the district’s highest graduation rate since the state changed how the rate is calculated. The Five Star District surpassed the state average of 80.7 percent, as reported by the Colorado Department of Education.

For the second consecutive year, all five of the district’s comprehensive high schools exceeded the state average. Of those five, two saw their highest graduation rate ever with Legacy High School at 94.5 percent and Mountain Range High School at 90.7 percent. In addition, two district charter schools, Prospect Ridge Academy and Westgate, exceeded the state average.

“We are proud of the progress we are making year-over-year in graduating more students,” Superintendent Chris Gdowski said. “One of our major goals in our new strategic plan, ELEVATE, is to not only increase our graduation rate but also to increase our rigor. Beyond our students earning diplomas, we want to prepare them for success wherever life takes them after high school. I believe we are doing just that and could not be prouder of the work our schools are doing to help our students succeed.”

Dropout rate matches district all-time low
As four year on-time graduation rates continue to rise in the Five Star District, more students are staying in school with a district dropout rate of 1.7 percent, matching the lowest in district history. Northglenn High saw a dropout rate of 1.1 percent, an all-time low for the school and second lowest in the district only behind Legacy for 2018. Northglenn’s rate is an improvement of more than 5 percentage points from 2010, meaning more than 120 students are remaining in school.

Alternative education pathways
Each year we see the number of students who would benefit from an alternative education pathway continue to grow. That increased need is met with continued success as the number of students graduating from an alternative pathway rises. For the Class of 2018, both of the district’s alternative schools saw their highest graduation rate to date. Vantage Point High School increased the number of graduating students by 6.3 percentage points in 2018, representing an increase of 37.1 percentage points since 2010. Vantage Point offers an individualized program for students in grades 9-12 who are at risk of not graduating. Additionally, Pathways Future Center, which uses a blended learning model - a mix of online and in-classroom learning - to meet the needs of students, continues to graduate more students every year, increasing to 60.7 percent in 2018.

Specialized populations
Continuing an impressive trend, a record 80.7 percent of our Hispanic students graduated in four years, up nearly 30 percentage points since 2010 when the Hispanic graduation rate was less than 51 percent. The Class of 2018 further closed the gap between Hispanic and White, Non-Hispanic students’ graduation rate to only 6.4 percent.

Additionally, the Five Star District graduated more students served through specialized programs in every category tracked by the state. The state measures graduation data for students served in various specialized programs, such as English Language Learners, students with Individualized Education Plans (IEP), economically disadvantaged students, gifted and talented students and homeless students.

“Raising achievement levels and closing the gap for all student groups regardless of race, ethnicity or socioeconomic status is another goal outlined in ELEVATE,” Gdowski said. “Seeing improvement for those students served in specialized programs shows us that we are providing the right opportunities for all students to find a path to success.”

The 2018 graduation rate for all district high schools:

  • Horizon High School: 93.1 percent
  • Legacy High School: 94.5 percent
  • Mountain Range High School: 90.7 percent
  • Northglenn High School: 89.4 percent
  • Pathways Future Center: 60.7 percent
  • Prospect Ridge Academy: 97.5 percent
  • Thornton High School: 83.0 percent
  • Vantage Point High School: 49.1 percent
  • Westgate Charter School: 100 percent

*This figure does not include district charter schools.