APS Builds Momentum with Improved Grad & Dropout Rates

A Message from Superintendent Rico Munn:

The second semester is well underway and in a few short months, the Class of 2018 will be walking across the stage to accept their diplomas. Last year, APS had the largest graduating class in history and this year should be no exception.

Earlier today, the Colorado Department of Education released 2017 graduation and dropout rates. Year over year, APS has been reaching new levels of success and we are proud of the momentum that is building across our district.

I am excited to announce that the APS 2017 graduation rate increased to 67.6 percent from 65 percent in 2016. This rate does not include our ASCENT students and students with disabilities who could have graduated on time but stayed in our district to pursue additional educational opportunities.

ASCENT students, who remain in APS for a fifth year, ambitiously earn free college credit while still in high school. Many even earn an associate's degree by the time they graduate from APS. Next year, thanks to new legislation, CDE will include our ASCENT students in our graduation rates for the year that they complete their high school requirements.

As you can see in the chart below, APS has seen a strong upward trend in graduation rates for the past several years. Although we are encouraged by these rates, we know we still have a lot of work to do and we will continue to accelerate learning for every APS student every day.

In addition, our dropout rate decreased to 2.5 percent, which is at a more than 12-year low.  This indicates that more of our students are engaged in school and excited to learn. Across the district, our teachers are providing relevant and rigorous instruction that prepares students for whatever college or career path they choose.

One of the  core beliefs included in our strategic plan,  APS 2020: Shaping the Future, is that students, families, staff and community members share the responsibility for student achievement. I am grateful for this shared partnership.

Together, we will continue to ensure that every student shapes a successful future.