Earlier today, graduation rates for the 2016-2017 school-year were released for all Georgia high schools. With this announcement, we are reminded once more that our progress as a school is indiscriminately subject to public review and evaluation. Without hesitation, we embrace this aspect of our work and will therefore continue to be transparent about our performance relative to critically important measures like graduation rates.
You may recall that last year, Banneker produced the highest graduation rate growth among all 16 traditional Fulton County High Schools. In that same year, we successfully transitioned our largest graduating class in recent history, totaling over 230 students. These results, considered together, represent a significant upwards shift in Banneker’s overall school performance. Today, I am pleased to announce that our forward progress continues – and Banneker’s graduation rate now stands at 71.1%.
With regard to our performance, you should know these things:
#1: ** Banneker’s graduation rate is at its highest point in recent history **
Note: The state’s graduation rate calculation formula dramatically changed in 2011, so performance comparisons prior to 2011 are not worthy of mention.
#2: ** Banneker’s graduation rate has improved by 30 percentage points in 5 years, the second highest growth of all traditional FCS high schools during that span **
BHS ANNUAL GRADUATION RATE PERFORMANCE
See chart below:
*Scores with asterisks denote historic lows
We believe that these results represent a continuation of the positive performance trajectory set in motion at the beginning of my administration in 2015. However, they also serve as a reminder that we have much more work to do. Banneker still trails both district the state average graduation rates by several points although we have aggressively made up ground towards closing the performance gap between us. For now and the foreseeable future, our work will continue to be focused on improving all aspects of our school community at a steady and consistent rate.
In closing, I would be remiss not to mention several individuals who deserve recognition for their work in increasing graduation rates at Banneker – chief among them include Ms. Diana Huntzinger, our Graduation Coach. Also, Ms. Doryiane Gunter, Assistant Principal of Student Services, the BHS Counseling Department under the leadership of Ms. Molongo Mukenge, teachers of senior students, and members of Banneker’s “Operation Graduation” team are all deserving of recognition.
I remain deeply appreciative of their hard work and commitment.