Families, teachers, school administrators, business leaders and community members agree: Together we need to
- Raise overall graduation rates
- Reduce opportunity gaps associated with low graduation rates
- Ensure students graduate with knowledge and skills for college and career
The good news is that through our collective efforts over the last few years — ODE, school district leaders, staff and communities working together — the number of students earning a high school diploma has been increasing. Although we still have an opportunity gap, we have examples of districts using best practices that result in impressive gains, especially with historically underserved students. You can read more about this in the graduation brief our research staff released with the graduation rate data.
Our future workforce and the health of our communities and state depend on our success. But more than that, we have a duty and a moral imperative to our students to give them the tools for success they will use throughout their lives. There are eight critical elements to improving graduation outcomes and each element has examples of successful strategies being used around the state. The full report, Oregon's Graduation: Critical Elements Leading to Positive Graduation Outcomes, goes into great detail on the elements and strategies. A brief outline of the eight critical elements is available for downloading. School and districts can use the blue buttons to see how the critical elements and strategies are being used around the state, then share their successes by clicking on the Your Story button on any of the pages. Families, community-based organizations and others can use the white buttons to see how they can help improve graduation rates in Oregon.
Oregon is committed to address the disparities experienced by American Indian/Alaska Native students, African-American/Black students, English Learners, Students with Disabilities and Opportunity Youth. To that end, the Oregon Department of Education has been working with stakeholder groups to develop success plans. These plans include many or all of the critical elements identified in the graduation report. Oregon will continue to focus on these young people as a key to improving our education system for all.