Graduation rate improvements is a credit to an entire community, students

Published 4:11 pm Friday, December 27, 2019

In just seven years, the graduation rate for the Vicksburg Warren School District has increased from 58.5 percent for the Class of 2013 to just over 80 percent for the Class of 2019; an improvement of nearly 38 percent.

While much of the credit for this growth must go to the students who attended classes and put forth the effort to graduate, there might be another underlying group to also thank for this success and future success.

In the time the growth in graduation rates has been tracked, the community — under the leadership of a dedicated few working through the Vicksburg-Warren County Chamber of Commerce — have raised thousands upon thousands of dollars to help fund the now system-wide implementation of the Leader in Me Program.

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In its response to questions from The Post this week, the district said the Leader in Me initiative “teaches 21st-century leadership and life skills to students and creates a culture of student empowerment based on the idea that every child can be a leader.”

And it is those leaders — the ones who are graduating in May and the ones who are beginning their development in the district’s pre-K classrooms — who will work to continue improvement in the district’s graduation rates, test scores and standing on the state and regional stage.

The work is not done.

Given that one student lost is too many, there are students who must be reached and helped to graduation.

Much has been accomplished and much still remains, but this improvement, this success is worthy of taking the time to celebrate.