TOWSON, MD—The four-year cohort graduation rate for Baltimore County Public Schools students for the 2021-2022 school year is 84.5 percent, according to data released March 9 by the Maryland State Department of Education.
BCPS’ graduation rate is 1.8 percentage points below the state average of 86.3 percent and is a decrease of 1.7 percentage points from the previous year.
“The small decrease in the BCPS graduation rate, while concerning, conforms with graduation rate decreases seen both statewide and in several school systems across the nation,” said Superintendent Dr. Darryl Williams. “BCPS students who graduated in 2022, the largest cohort of seniors in the last three years, dealt with pandemic-related disruptions and challenges for most of their high school experience. However, these students persevered and accomplished great things, including securing nearly $211 million in scholarships to pursue post-secondary education options. We are confident that with targeted strategies and supports for our middle and high school cohorts, our graduation rate will resume a positive trajectory.”
MSDE released the four-year and five-year graduation rate calculations for all school systems and schools in the state of Maryland. The most recent data is for graduates who entered high school during the 2018-2019 school year (the class of 2022). The BCPS five-year graduation rate is 87.6 percent—down 1.7 percentage points from the previous year and 1.4 percentage points lower than the state rate (89.0 percent).
The dropout rate for the Class of 2022 is 9.6 percent, an increase of 1.1 percentage points from last year. While BCPS’ dropout rate is higher than the state, the system is seeing improvement in certain student groups.
The four-year graduation rate improved for students receiving Free and Reduced-price Meals. The rate rose to 79.0 percent, a one-year increase of 0.8 percentage points. Over that same time, the dropout rate for these students has decreased by 1.5 percentage points. The graduation rates for students receiving special education services remained constant while the dropout rate decreased by 0.5 percentage point from 2021 to 2022.
Among schools, the biggest gain was at Randallstown High School, where the graduation rate increased by 10.6 percentage points from last year to 88.1 percent. Overlea High School’s graduation rate rose to 79.3 percent, an 8.4 percentage point increase over the last year.
“We recognize that we have a lot of work to do to ensure all students graduate on time and ready for college and careers, but the significant gains at Randallstown and Overlea are an encouraging sign that we are on the right path,” Dr. Williams said. “We continue to offer expanded academic resources and supports to students either during the school day, after school, Saturdays, and through our summer programs. I know that as we continue to focus on meeting the individual needs of our students, we will make progress in the years to come.”
Among other highlights of school performance:
- The highest graduation rates for the Class of 2022 were at Eastern Technical High School (99.3 percent); George W. Carver Center for the Arts and Technology (99.2 percent); Hereford High School (96.9 percent); Pikesville High School (95.3); Towson High School (95.2); and Western School of Technology and Environmental Science (97.3).
- Randallstown High School saw an increase of 10.6 percentage points in its graduation rate and a decrease of 7 percentage points in its dropout rate.
- Six high schools (Catonsville, Milford Mill, New Town, Overlea, Randallstown, and Sparrows Point) saw an increase in their graduation rate.
- Seven high schools (Catonsville, Chesapeake, Dundalk, New Town, Overlea, Randallstown, and Sparrows Point) saw a decrease in their dropout rate.
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