About that 93% Graduation Rate…

This just in… Despite the travails of the COVID-19 epidemic and distance learning last year, 93% of Virginia students who entered the 9th grade in 2017-18 earned their diplomas and graduated within four years, the Virginia Department of Education announced today.

Actions by the State Board of Education and “the emergency waivers I issued last year,” said Superintendent of Education James Lane, “ensured that students were not prevented from graduating by pandemic-related factors beyond their control.”

Question: What percentage of students actually mastered the subject matter required to earn a diploma? Is a Virginia high school diploma worth the paper it’s printed on? Will students enter the workforce with unrealistic expectations regarding their capabilities? How many college-bound students will require remedial education? Is Virginia, in its striving for “equity,” achieving its goal by abandoning all standards?


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3 responses to “About that 93% Graduation Rate…”

  1. Steve Gillispie Avatar
    Steve Gillispie

    You know the answer to that.

    You already know that the failure rates were so high they lowered the pass threshold dramatically.

    You also know that teachers were forced to advance students by diktats from administrators at the threat of job loss.

    You know that most universities are now devoting the Freshman year to coursework designed to get their students college-ready.

  2. Kathleen Smith Avatar
    Kathleen Smith

    We can only consider the alternative: Hundreds of students delayed an entire year for graduation and of those hundreds, many, many, dropping out completely, done with school. Seriously, I can only hope that schools did the best they could do given the circumstances.

    1. LarrytheG Avatar

      Yes, the alternative would have been a real mess. The schools would have to temporarily created a grade 13 or some such, and the logistics and staffing to do that would have been significant.

      I wonder if other states did similar.

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