Wakulla High School’s Class of 2016 exceeded Florida’s graduation rate according to statistics recently released by the Florida Department of Education. WHS graduated 89.3 percent of its seniors within four years, as compared to the state rate of 80.7 percent.
At 89.3 percent, Wakulla High students improved their graduation rate for 2016 compared to the previous year of 83 percent for the WHS Class of 2015 graduates.
Wakulla High principal Mike Barwick notes, “I credit our teachers and staff with going the extra mile for every student. Their tenacity at finding ways to engage even the most resistant learners is incredible. None of us wants to give up on a child.”
Overall, including alternative programs such as Second Chance and virtual school, Wakulla County School District improved to an 86.9 percent 2016 graduation rate compared to the 2015 district graduation rate of 78.1 percent.
Districtwide, all 2016 subgroups improved from 2015. Black students had an improved 2016 graduation rate of 91.2 percent, compared to the 2015 Wakulla rate of 78.8 percent for Black students. The 2016 state graduation rate for Black students was 72.3 percent.
Wakulla’s students with disabilities made a huge leap, improving their 2016 graduation rate to 82.5 percent over the Wakulla 2015 rate of 61.1 percent. Statewide, students with disabilities had a 2016 graduation rate of 61.6 percent.
Economically disadvantaged students in Wakulla graduated at 82.2 percent in 2016, compared to the previous year of 64.1 percent. Statewide, the economically disadvantaged graduation rate for 2016 students was 74.4 percent.
States Superintendent Bobby Pearce, “While I am pleased with the improvement in our students’ overall graduation rate for 2016, I am most encouraged by the improvement in our subgroups as we disaggregate the data. To me, it speaks to the importance of every single student. It’s our job to make sure no one slips through the cracks.”
Chief Academic Officer Sunny Chancy has been instrumental in implementing programs such as Wakulla’s virtual school and performance-based options so that there is a place for every student to succeed.
The graduation rate used by Florida is a uniform federal graduation rate that counts only students who graduate with a standard diploma within four years of starting high school.