Maple Ridge – Pitt Meadows students are graduating at an impressively high rate.
School District 42 is seeing grad rates which exceed the provincial average, and reach the highest levels in close to a decade.
B.C. Ministry of Education data shows the percentage of resident students who have completed Grade 12 within six years of enrolling in Grade 8 reached 93.2 per cent in 2019-20. The rate is an increase over the 92.3 per cent seen the previous school year, and is higher than the provincial average of 89.6 per cent.
“The numbers show a steady improvement across all areas of SD42,” said Board Chair Korleen Carreras. “They are phenomenal results and highlight the great work that is going on in the district.”
Outgoing SD42 superintendent Sylvia Russell said staff have worked hard to provide important interventions and supports for students, which has led to significant increases in graduation rates.
“As a school district, we can be proud of the professional learning and commitment to students that our staff demonstrate daily,” she said. “These great results are the product of all of our staff being focused on who we are here to serve – our students.”
Graduation rates for Indigenous students continued a five-year positive trend, with a six-year completion rate of 86.2%, up from 81.2 per cent in 2018-19 and higher than the 71.1 per cent provincial average.
Six-year completion rates for students with special needs also increased to 84.3% in 2019-20 from 82.5% the previous school year. The provincial average graduation rate for students with special needs is 73.9%.
“Our secondary school staff have been reviewing the progress of each of our students, with particular attention and support for those who face challenges in their lives, which have made the goal of achieving high school graduation more difficult,” Russell added. “These supports are making a significant difference.”
The number of students graduating with honours in SD42 is also on the rise.
In 2019-20, 55% of first-time Grade 12 students received the distinction, up from 50 per cent the year before, while 62 per cent of eligible Grade 12 students graduated with honours, up from 60 per cent the year before.