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Graduation rate drops at North Platte

by Alan McArthur
Landmark reporter

The North Platte School District narrowly made the Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) last year because of the number of high school student drop-outs.

The district had a total graduation rate of 85.7 percent. According to Jeffrey Sumy, superintendent, the required rate is 85 percent.

The graduation rate is calculated by following students who enter the 9th grade through graduation. According to the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) website, the rate is “the number of graduates as a percent of the sum of graduates and dropouts in grades 9-12.”

The North Platte graduation rate dropped from 94.1 percent in 2007 and was 92.6 percent in 2006.

The graduation rate for the entire state of Missouri was 85 percent. The Park Hill School District had a total graduation rate of 90.8 percent, down from 92.3 percent in 2007. The Platte County R-3 District had a graduation rate of 91.2 percent up from 90.6 percent in 2007.

The West Platte School District did not meet the graduation rate required with an 84.7 percent, down from 87.5 percent in 2007.

Sumy said the district is trying to increase its graduation rate by identifying students who are at risk of dropping out. Sumy said Roger Giger, high school principal, plans to start a program to identify at-risk students by the age of 16.

If a district does not make a portion of the AYP, the board must notify the patrons of the district and attempt to rectify the problem within two years, according to Sumy. The district must also look at the district's comprehensive school improvement plan (CSIP) and update or revise the plan.

The North Platte School Board also discussed how to make up days missed because the beginning of school was delayed due to water damage in the junior high school.

The board decided to hold school on President's Day and Martin Luther King, Jr. Day to make up two of the four missed days. School was delayed because of the threat of mold discovered in the North Platte Junior High School in Dearborn.

Sumy also reported to the board about a letter he had drafted to send to some parents who had addresses outside of the district's boundaries.

Sumy said the letter notified them of the address issue. If a student does not live in the district, they may attend those schools if they pay tuition.

“The addresses were inaccurate for most,” said Sumy.

Sumy said there had not been a change in the enrollment numbers since the letters were sent out.



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