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Bowser Administration Announces Overall Four-Year Graduation Rate for 2018-19 School Year

Friday, November 8, 2019

Media Contact: Fred Lewis (OSSE) – (202) 412-2167; [email protected]

Today, the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) announced that the four-year graduation rate for the 2018-19 school year remained flat compared to the rate for the previous school year, with 68.2 percent of students in the District of Columbia graduating high school in four years, according to the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE).

“These results show we clearly have more work to do in ensuring all students graduate from high school on time, prepared for success in college and the career of their choice,” said Mayor Muriel Bowser. “However, I am encouraged by our continued progress on The Nation’s Report Card and the steady progress we are making on our statewide assessments in reading and math, year after year. Our assessment results show me that more and more students are benefitting from the investments my administration has made in education and, while we still have a long way to go, I believe we are on the right path and must continue to work hard and creatively to ensure all students can benefit from our progress.”

The graduation rate for DC Public Schools (DCPS) was 65.1 percent, down 3.5 percentage points from the previous year, and the graduation rate for public charter schools was 76.4 percent, up 4.0 percentage points from the previous year. The adjusted cohort consisted of 4,926 students who entered ninth grade in the 2015-16 school year. Of those students, 3,359 graduated high school in spring 2019. Since OSSE began using the Adjusted Cohort Graduation Rate in the 2010-11 school year, the graduation rate for the District of Columbia has increased nearly 10 percentage points.

District of Columbia Statewide Adjusted Cohort Graduation Rate

2018-19 School Year

  • ACGR (%): 68.2%

2017-18 School Year

  • ACGR (%): 68.5%

2016-17 School Year

  • ACGR (%): 72.4%

2015-16 School Year

  • ACGR (%): 69.2%

2014-15 School Year

  • ACGR (%): 65.4%

2013-14 School Year

  • ACGR (%): 61.4%

2012-13 School Year

  • ACGR (%): 61.5%

2011-12 School Year

  • ACGR (%): 61%

2010-11 School Year

  • ACGR (%): 58.58%

The graduation rate for African-American students remained consistent with the rate for the 2017-18 school year while graduation rates among students with disabilities increased by 2.85 percentage points. At-risk students, Latino/Hispanic students, and English learners saw decreases in the graduation rate by 1.15, 5.30 and 4.88 percentage points, respectively.

Sixteen public and public charter high schools had graduation rate increases in the 2018-19 school year: Ballou High School (3.16 percent); Coolidge High School (9.70); Roosevelt High School (3.82 percent); School Without Walls (0.60 percent); Washington Metropolitan High School (4.54 percent); Cesar Chavez PCS – Capitol Hill (7.01 percent); E.L. Haynes PCS (1.27 percent); Friendship Collegiate Academy (9.40 percent); Friendship Technology Prep (1.62 percent); IDEA PCS (25.07 percent); KIPP College Prep PCS (0.51 percent); Maya Angelou PCS (8.36 percent); Washington Latin PCS (1.26 percent); National Collegiate Prep (13.65 percent); Kingsman Academy (27.27 percent); Goodwill Excel Center (6.43 percent).  

One high school, Benjamin Banneker Academic High School, had a 100 percent graduation rate for the 2018-19 school year and has maintained that rate since the 2012-13 school year. Twenty-one out of a total 41 high schools in the District of Columbia exceeded the statewide four-year adjusted cohort graduation rate for the 2018-19 school year.

“In an effort to ensure more students can be successful throughout high school, OSSE has been working with our colleagues at DCPS and public charter schools to provide educators greater supports and resources in helping students make successful transitions from middle school to high school. We have expanded supports for students with disabilities and increased access to dual-enrollment programs and other initiatives that expose students to college-level coursework,” said State Superintendent Hanseul Kang. “OSSE has also invested $11 million over three years to support the lowest performing schools in DC in their improvement efforts to ensure more students can succeed in each grade level and graduate high school prepared for the future.”

The District uses the Adjusted Cohort Graduation Rate (ACGR), a federally-required methodology used by all states to maintain a consistent standard for high school graduation rate reporting. Under the ACGR, a cohort of students who entered school as first-time ninth graders in the 2015-16 school year was tracked for four years to determine the total number of students who graduated from high school in the 2018-19 school year with a regular diploma.

For more information or to view additional data, please visit OSSE's website.