Graduation, dropout rates vary throughout MCPS

Jan. 15, 2004, midnight | By Ellie Blalock Allison Elvove | 17 years ago

Ethnicity plays important role

Throughout Montgomery County, graduation and dropout rates vary significantly by high school and by ethnicity according to MCPS data collected by the Maryland School Performance Program for the 2001-2002 school year.

At Blair, the graduation rate increased from 94.2 percent in 2001 to 95.36 percent in 2002. However, among Blair's different ethnic groups, dropout rates varied. In the 2001-2002 school year, based on the number of students enrolled, 0.20 percent of Asian students, 1.43 percent of African-American students, 0.55 percent of white students and 2.89 percent of Hispanic students dropped out of high school during grades nine through twelve. MCPS standards define 1.25 percent to be a low dropout rate and above 3.00 percent to be an unsatisfactory dropout rate.

Among the five high schools comprising the Downcounty Consortium (DCC), only Blair, Albert Einstein, John F. Kennedy and Wheaton have current data available. There is no published information regarding dropout and graduation rates for Northwood, which will reopen in the 2004-2005 school year.

Einstein, Kennedy and Wheaton also exhibited varying graduation rates for the 2001-2002 year. At Einstein, the dropout rate for Asian students was 0.00 percent, 0.56 percent for African-Americans, 0.74 percent for white students and 1.44 percent for Hispanic students. At Kennedy, 0.00 percent of Asians, 1.32 percent of African-Americans, 1.68 percent of whites, and 2.47 percent of Hispanic students dropped out. Wheaton exhibited considerably higher dropout rates, especially among Hispanic and African American students: 2.11 percent of Asian, 3.74 percent of African-American, 2.23 percent of white and 4.33 percent of Hispanic students left school.

Outside of the DCC, rates continued to differ among ethnic groups. At Damascus, for instance, the dropout rate for Asians was 1.94 percent, for African Americans 3.73 percent, for whites 2.55 percent and for Hispanics 1.33 percent. At Walt Whitman, located in one of Montgomery County's most affluent areas, dropout rates are considerably lower than those of Damascus or of the four DCC schools mentioned above: 0.35 percent for Asians, 2.67 percent for African American students, 0.20 percent for white students and 0.95 percent for Hispanic students.

For more specific data regarding Montgomery County schools, go to the MCPS website.

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Ellie Blalock. Ellie is a SENIOR in the CAP program at Blair. She enjoys such activities as traveling, being able to say "water" in six languages and having heart-to-heart chats with eccentric politicians. If you're in need of a laugh, please ask Ellie about her driving … More »

Allison Elvove. Allison Elvove was a Co-Editor-in-Chief of Silver Chips Online during the 2004-2005 school year. She wrote more than 70 articles while on the staff and supervised 40 student journalists, editing articles on a daily basis. During her time as editor, Silver Chips Online won the … More »

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