Idaho schools are shown to be traveling on an upward trajectory after Idaho State Department of Education released its annual Infographic that indicated improvements on a statewide level.

According to a State Department of Education press release, Idaho now ranks fifth in the nation for its percentage of college-ready students, third in the nation for its percentage of high school students in dual enrollment (college) courses and tenth in the nation for its percentage of high schools offering dual enrollment courses.

During the 2017-18 school year, more than 25,000 Idaho high school students earned nearly 185,000 college credits while in high school.

“It’s easy to get sidetracked by criticisms or concerns about the relative lack of resources in Idaho compared to many other states, but the truth is that Idaho students defy those expectations and outperform their peers in other states on numerous important measures of student achievement,” Superintendent Sherri Ybarra said. “As my staff assembled a list of those indicators, the results were pretty remarkable and I realized we need to share this with a wide range of Idahoans, from policymakers to parents.”

Jefferson Joint School District No. 251 Superintendent Chad Martin said Rigby High School currently has 13 advance placement courses and 69 duel credit classes.

According to Ririe Superintendent Chad Williams, Ririe High School has six duel enrollment classes taught by Ririe teachers, but students can take classes taught by professors from the College of Southern Idaho, College of Western Idaho and Boise State University through the Idaho Digital Learning Academy. Overall during the 2017-18 school year, 416 college credits were earned by students.

West Jefferson High School Principal David McDonald said the school currently has five duel enrollment classes that include government, English, EMT and two math courses. Students are also able to take advance placement courses through the Idaho Digital Learning Academy.

Similarly, Idaho’s four-year high school graduation rate surpassed 80 percent, 90 percent of Idaho’s high schools posted rates of 90 percent or better and 18 of those schools graduated 100 percent of their students in four years.

During the 2017-18 school year, Rigby had a graduation rate of 88.7 percent, Ririe had a 95 percent rate and West Jefferson had 100 percent of their students graduate.

“This doesn’t mean we should rest on our laurels,” Ybarra said. “There is much left to achieve and improve, and we have solid plans in place to expand on our successes. But if our spirits can be buoyed by what has already been accomplished, the path to further improvement may be easier and more enjoyable.”

The 2018 in Review report from Idaho Career and Technical Education shows a statewide course enrollment of nearly 94,000 with 96 percent of high school students in CTE programs graduating.

Lastly, reading and math proficiency are up statewide according to the Idaho Standards Achievement Test. Idaho currently ranks seventh in fourth grade reading and 12th in fourth grade math, and ranks third in eighth grade reading and seventh in eighth grade math.

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