According to a report released by the Maryland State Department of Education, the graduation rates increased slightly across the state. White and Asian students are still leading in most jurisdictions, even though the rates in African Americans students increased by 1.8 percentage points.
The report revealed the rate for white students increased by 92.4 percent and the rate for African American students was 84.1 percent, up 1.8 percentage points.
In Baltimore County the gap disappeared, white students had an 89.5 percent graduation rate and the rate for African-American students was 89.7 percent. To achieve this success, Baltimore County School officials utilized both summer school programs and computer classes to help students earn the credits needed to help them graduate.
Eighteen of 24 high schools in Baltimore County have seen rate increases since 2013. In 2016, Woodlawn High School had the highest graduation rate, 89.2 percent, as rates improved statewide across 10 jurisdictions.
Baltimore and Anne Arundel County also saw improvement in graduation rates, with Baltimore gaining 1.13 percentage points and Anne Arundel County gained 1.08 points. However, the rates slightly fell in several Baltimore suburbs. The graduation rate in Harford County dropped 0.85 of a point to 89.09 percent. The graduation rate in Howard County dipped by about a quarter of a point to 93.21 percent.
Montgomery, Cecil, Prince George’s, Queen Anne’s, Dorchester and Caroline counties also saw gains. The graduation rate in Cecil County increased about 2.9 percentage points, which was the largest gain among these counties.
“The new data is great news for Maryland, as the high school diploma is the important first step of a successful journey,” Karen Salmon, the state superintendent of schools, said in a statement. “We continue to strengthen our standards and our classrooms to better prepare each student for employment or additional education.”
A rate increase was also shown among special-education students and students who receive reduced and free meals.