Congratulations to Wayne County Schools for being among 111 public school districts statewide that delivered on a pledge made five years ago to improve the college- and career-readiness of its high school graduates by 2015.
All of the state’s 169 P-12 superintendents and local board chairs signed the pledge – known as the Commonwealth Commitment to College and Career Readiness – in 2011. (In Kentucky, five public school districts do not have high schools). Each of the districts had a unique goal based on increasing its 2010 college- and career-readiness (CCR) rate by 50 percent by 2015.
Wayne County had a goal for at least 67% of our high school students to graduate college- and career-ready in 2015. In reality, 74% graduated ready as measured by the Unbridled Learning Accountability model.
“We are happy to have been recognized for this achievement, especially since our current focus is to transition from a traditional high school model to become an early college and career center,” said Wayne County Superintendent Wayne Roberts. “In today’s economy, our students cannot afford to wait until after graduation to begin pursuing their college and career plans.”
“The increase in college and career ready graduates is a direct result of the intentional efforts of our staff,” explained Instructional Supervisor Brian Dishman. “Our goal is that every graduate leave Wayne County Schools prepared for the next phase of their life. Meeting and exceeding our CCR goal validates our efforts in this area.”
Education Commissioner Stephen Pruitt recognized Wayne County at the Kentucky School Boards Association conference in Louisville on February 27.
“As a result of the commitment being met, at least 15,000 more students statewide graduated in 2015 than did in 2010 ready for postsecondary opportunities,” he said. “This is tremendous, and puts the Commonwealth on the right track as we look to build on the accomplishments of the past 25 years and provide each and every child with a world-class education that will lead them to success in their postsecondary endeavors, in the job market and life.”
In 2010, only 34 percent of Kentucky’s high school students were considered ready for college and careers. That rate jumped to 66.8 percent in 2015, based on Unbridled Learning accountability results released last fall.
Districts across the state used many different strategies to help their students become college- and career-ready. In Wayne County, district and school administrators, teachers and the board of education have worked hard to improve CCR. Transitional courses in reading and math offered during the senior year, an intervention period called “Red Zone” that focuses on helping seniors complete career readiness measures, and an advising program to help students complete career pathways are measures that have been taken to improve CCR.
The Commonwealth Commitment was tied to the passage of Senate Bill 1 (2009), which required that P-12 and postsecondary education leaders produce a plan to reduce the number of high school graduates needing remediation when they enter college by 50 percent – effectively saving students from paying tuition for remedial courses for which they do not earn college credit and increasing the likelihood they will persist in college and graduate with a degree.
Wayne County Board Members (L-R): Whitney Smith, Michelle Flynn, and Nancy Duncan were presented with a certificate by Commissioner Stephen Pruitt at the KY School Board Association conference in Louisville.
Click here to see the results for each county.