Education

Local schools get passing marks on SC report cards

High school students take notes Friday morning in the River Bluff High School auditorium during a debate between 2nd Congressional District candidates Arik Bjorn, Eddie McCain and Rep. Joe Wilson, R-S.C. Election day is Nov. 4.
High school students take notes Friday morning in the River Bluff High School auditorium during a debate between 2nd Congressional District candidates Arik Bjorn, Eddie McCain and Rep. Joe Wilson, R-S.C. Election day is Nov. 4. online@thestate.com

S.C. education leaders are touting improvements in the state’s graduation rate in the latest school report cards, released Tuesday.

The state’s graduation rate rose to 82.6 percent in 2016, a new record, state education Superintendent Molly Spearman said, unveiling the new report cards.

The graduation rate was 80 percent in 2015 and 72 percent during the 2009-10 school year, just after the end of the Great Recession.

“This is over a 2-point increase from last year and a true testament to the collaborative effort of students, parents and educators to ensure that all graduates are prepared for success,” Spearman said.

In the Midlands, graduation rates ranged from a high of 90.3 percent in Lexington-Richland 5 to a low 75 percent in Lexington 4.

Other Midlands graduation rates were: Lexington 3, 89.7 percent; Lexington 1, 88.6 percent; Richland 2, 88.5 percent; Lexington 2, 87.9 percent; Kershaw, 83.1 percent; and Richland 1, 77.6 percent.

Graduation rates were up in all but two school districts — Kershaw, down one percentage point, and Lexington 1, down 0.3 percentage points.

Other categories included in the report cards.

▪  Percentage of graduates in two- and four-year colleges: Lex-Rich 5, 84.9; Lexington 1, 78.5; Lexington 3, 75.2; Richland 2, 70.3; Richland 1, 66.5; Lexington 2, 63.7; Kershaw, 60.2; Lexington 4, 57.9. Statewide, the average was 70.7 percent.

▪  Seniors who completed college applications: Lexington 2, Richland 1 and Richland 2, all 100 percent; Lex-Rich 5, 71.9 percent; Lexington 4, 48.5 percent; and Kershaw, 42.3 percent. Lexington 1 and Lexington 3 did not list a number.

▪ Annual dropout rate: Lexington 4, 3.3 percent, up from 1.1 percent: Richland 1, 3.1 percent, up from 2.4 percent; Lexington 3, 2.9 percent, up from 2.5 percent; Richland District 2, 1.5 percent, down from 1.6 percent; Lexington 2, 1.2 percent, down from 3.3 percent; Lex-Rich 5, 1.2 percent, up from 0.9 percent; Lexington 1, 1.1 percent, steady; and Kershaw, 1 percent, down from 1.7 percent.

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