The dropout rate continues to be the lowest in Maryland.
Frederick, Md (KM) Frederick County Public Schools continue to have one of the highest graduation rates in Maryland. In 2022, the rate for high school students was 93 percent, according to Jennifer Bingman, the Director of Accountability and School Improvement. She also says the dropout rate is 3.7 percent, the lowest in the state.
Bingman says one reason is the many opportunities available for students who are having trouble in their classes to improve. . One of them is credit recovery, which was very helpful for students following the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic when many of the schools were closed to help slow the rate of infection. “We worked really hard to make sure that students have the opportunity to have a variety of ways to earn credit recovery, knowing that coming out of the pandemic we had some structures we had to address and really provide additional support for students,” says Bingman.
FCPS also has Evening High School which enables students to complete the course they need for graduation while working during the day. “Actually, the Evening High School is part of our Frederick County Virtual School. It’s the opportunity for students to obtain graduation requirements through the Frederick County Virtual School, and sometimes we try to provide alternative ways for students to do that which can also happen during the evenings,” she says.
“Our Frederick County Virtual School provides a variety of opportunities and time periods for when students can obtain their courses and their credits,” she continues. “It is flexible and does allow students to have that opportunity to make it work with the schedule.”
Bingman says the graduation rate for Caucasian students is 97 percent, and for African-American students it’s 93 percent which she says eliminates the achievement gap in this particular metric. The rate for Hispanics is 80 percent,; and students of Asian ancestry, the graduation rate 99 percent.
Even though the numbers look good, Bingman says FCPS will continue working to keep the graduation rate high, and improve it. “So definitely monitoring our students as they come into high school and making sure that they’re earning credits, that they’re successfully being promoted to tenth grade and determining how we can provide additional support when students are struggling,” she says.
FCPS says the county’s gradation rate is seven percent higher than the state’s average graduation rate, and is consistently above the national average. Also, the four-year graduation rate increased by about four percent for student receiving special education services. Last year, an average 3,100 high school diplomas were awarded to students.
By Kevin McManus