California graduation rate improves, remains below local results

San Ramon Valley sees 98.4% high school grad rate in 2013, better than figures countywide (85.8%) and statewide (80.2%)

California's high school graduation rate increased in 2013 for the fourth year in a row, but it remained lower than results seen locally, according to data released Monday by the state's Department of Education.

The state's graduation rate in 2013 was 80.2%, up 1.3 percentage points from the year before but below marks posted in Contra Costa County (85.8%) and the San Ramon Valley (98.4%) in 2013.

"For the first time in our state's history, more than 80% of our students are graduating -- a clear sign of their hard work and the support they receive from their teachers, families and communities," said Tom Torlakson, state superintendent of public instruction.

The 2013 graduate rate measures students who started high school in 2009 and graduated with their class, Torlakson said.

In 2013, the San Ramon Valley saw its high school graduation rate increase by 1.4% and its dropout rate decrease by 1.2% while also seeing its population increase by 28 students compared to 2012, according to figures provided Monday by the San Ramon Valley Unified School District.

"It's definitely something worth celebrating, but at the same time, we're not completely satisfied until that number reaches 100%," SRVUSD spokesman Terry Koehne said.

Of those local students who did not graduate with their class, 0.4% dropped out, 0.4% are still enrolled in school, 0.7% were in non-diploma special education programs and 0.1% passed the GED test, according to the SRVUSD's data.

In the school-by-school comparison, Monte Vista High posted the highest graduation rate at 99.6%, followed by California High at 98.8%, San Ramon Valley High at 98.5%, Dougherty Valley High at 97.9% and Venture alternative school at 95.2%. Data for Del Amigo Continuation High School were not released.

Statewide, of the students who did not graduate with their class, 7.5% are still enrolled in school, 0.2% passed the GED test and 0.5% are non-diploma special education students, Torlakson said.

The rest -- 11.6% -- were dropouts, representing a 1.5% decrease in the statewide dropout rate compared to the previous year, Torlakson said.

The graduation rates for black and Hispanic students climbed faster than the statewide average, though their overall rates are below average, Torlakson said.

The 2013 graduation rate for black students was 67.9%, up 1.9 percentage points from the year before. The rate for Hispanic students was 75.4%, up 1.7 percentage points from the year before.

In the Bay Area, Marin County had the highest 2013 graduation rate, at 91.4%, according to state data.

Alameda County's graduation rate was 80.4%, Napa County's was 85.3%, San Mateo County's was 88.2%, Santa Clara County's was 82.9%, Solano County's was 81.4% and Sonoma County's was 82.2%.

San Francisco Unified School District's graduation rate was 81.6%, which the district said was similar to its rate for the previous two years.

"We are continuing toward our goal of graduating 100% of our students with the skills and knowledge they will need to succeed," Torlakson said.

Information from the Bay City News Service was used in this report.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Frankly
a resident of San Ramon
on Apr 30, 2014 at 7:34 am

Ok, sounds mighty good. Right?

Let's see!! All college and universities, Berkeley included, have repeated stated that those who graduate and arrive as Freshmen, CAN NOT read, write, speak, think nor analyze.

What's graduating? Just submitted numbers? Actual academic skills?

You hear TV news state all of this! You read area papers reporting the same thing! So what's changed?

Any thoughts?

The future is at stake! Wouldn't you think?

Think about it!!

 +   Like this comment
Posted by susan
a resident of San Ramon Valley High School
on May 9, 2014 at 4:08 pm

Not necessarily true, Frankly,of all graduating seniors. My own daughter graduated in 2013 and is at a highly rated UC. She "tested out" of any remedial classes as well as the mandated freshman writing classes for UC students. She was a Sophmore after her 1st quarter. I agree she may be an outlier but she is NOT, by any means, the only student in the SRVUSD to be fully prepared for their college experience. Generalizations do not hold true in all areas and in all instances. I agree that our educational system as a whole has a long way to go (and I am a part of it, being an educator for a different district). SRVUSD is not perfect (no district is) but I cannot voice any objection to the opportunities presented my daughter by the SRVUSD. They were just that, opportunities. What she, and we as a family decided to do with those opportunities is responsible for her success. All students here are presented with roughly the same opportunities. I have sat through open houses where parents have had the audacity to ask the teacher to hand their son/daughter an A because art isn't his/her thing but he/she is trying to get into ______ college. These are the graduates you speak of. Those who took the easy way out because it was good enough. Luckily, good enough did not work for us. A by-product of this is that my daughter has an incredible work ethic. She worked hard to get where she is today and does not expect accolades to be handed to her. The same is true of so many of her friends. A graduation rate speake directly to the amount of family involvement in its children's futures. We in the SRVUSD talk about college from the minute they enter pre-school. Districts vary widely in how they approach the preparation of their students for college and careers. I speak from experience. While we have room for growth the SRVUSD is doing a very good job at present.

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Susan
a resident of San Ramon Valley High School
on May 9, 2014 at 4:12 pm

Yikes! Please excuse my typos...

Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.


Post a comment

Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online. Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.

Name: *

Select your neighborhood or school community: *

Comment: *

Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.

*Required Fields

Skin cancer rates soaring as Baby Boomers age
By Tim Hunt | 3 comments | 512 views

Taking SAT Subject Tests: Greater Flexibility or More Murkiness
By Elizabeth LaScala | 0 comments | 438 views

Internet, Über alles?
By Tom Cushing | 6 comments | 413 views