Nevada: A Look at Graduation Rates and Assessments

Nevada School Enrollment

Nevada has an enrollment of 467,527 students, as of 2015 - 2016 data.  About 42% of them are Hispanic and 10.47% of them are African American.

Graduation Rates

The graduation rates tell a story.  

Graduation rates for black students - 2016

  • 44.3% received a regular diploma
  • 21.63% were "Transfer Outs" ("enrolled in other program for their high school diploma")
  • 34.07% were Non-Graduates (no diploma within four years of entering 9th grade)

I can't get beyond the graduation rates.

If you look at their cohort graduation rate (which I believe includes those who were able to get a regular diploma even though they "transferred out" to another type of program), the four-year graduation rate goes to 56.53% for African-American students in Nevada (for 2016).

This data is consistent with the National Center for Education Statistics' data which puts the graduation rate, in the 2013 - 2014 school year, for black children in Nevada at 54%.  This is heartbreaking.

Graduation rates for Hispanic students - 2016

  • 59.42%  received a regular diploma
  • 14.8% were "Transfer Outs" ("enrolled in other program for their high school diploma")
  • 25.78% were Non-Graduates (no diploma within four years of entering 9th grade)
  • Cohort Graduation Rate - 69.74% for Hispanic students

Graduation rates for white students - 2016

  • 62.39%  received a regular diploma
  • 21.9% were "Transfer Outs" ("enrolled in other program for their high school diploma")
  • 15.71% were Non-Graduates (no diploma within four years of entering 9th grade)
  • Cohort Graduation Rate - 79.88% for white students

Assessments

Nevada currently conducts High School End of Course exams for:

  • Math I and II (emphasis on algebra I and geometry)
  • Integrated Math 1 and 2
  • English language arts (focused on comprehension)
  • For 2020 and beyond--science (focused on Life Science) and combined English language arts (for reading and writing)

According to the Nevada Department of Education's website, the class of 2019 will be the first to be required to get a passing score on the End of Course exams in order to graduate.  In 2020, that class and beyond will take the End of Course exam for science and the combined English language arts exam, in addition to the math exams.

For grades 3 - 8, Nevada participates in the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium with exams aligned with Common Core Standards in English language arts and mathematics.

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The department has set forth the following goals:

  1. All students are proficient in reading by the end of the 3rd grade.
  2. All students enter high school with skill necessary to succeed
  3. All students graduate college, career, and community ready.
  4. All students learn in an environment that is physically, emotionally, and intellectually safe.
  5. All students served by effective educators.
  6. Efficient and effective use of public funds in service to students.

We will continue to follow Nevada as the state prepares and implements its State Plan under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).

References:

National Center for Educational Statistics, Public High School Graduation Rates, (Last Updated: May 2016).  Accessed 2017.

Nevada Report Card 2015 - 2016.  Nevada Department of Education.  Accessed February 12, 2017.  http://www.nevadareportcard.com/di/report/profile?reportID=profile&scope=e7.y13&organization=64825&

 

 

Danita Smith