Gold Trail completion rates exceed goals

The statistics looked bad, but in reality, only one-third of the "incompletes" had left school.

Incorrect information used by the Ministry of Education has caused School District No. 74 (Gold Trail) to re-assess its completion data, which shows the number of students who have completed their graduation requirements. The revised results show that the District is far above its targets in all areas, not below, as the initial report from the MoE indicated.

In late December the MoE released its completion report for the 2013/14 school year, and also released the names of students identified as “not completing” in that year. Schools were provided with the names of these students, and asked to indicate the status of the learners in question. The District reviewed the evidence based on information provided by the schools.

The MoE had identified 38 SD74 students as “not completing” in the 2013/14 school year. The District, after consultation with area schools, ascertained that of those students 18 had moved out of Gold Trail (14 had moved out of province); four were continuing with school (seven-year or adult graduation programs); three had graduated (one Dogwood, two Evergreen); and 13 self-selected to withdraw.

The results highlight the challenge of including completion data within the Superintendent’s Report on Achievement, without having access to all pertinent data, and shows the importance of first reviewing, and including, District data. It also shows the fluidity of the Gold Trail student population, and indicates that District schools know their learners, past and present.

The adjusted six-year completion rate for the 2013/14 school year shows:

For all students: 88 per cent (an increase of 21 per cent from the initial report; 11 per cent above the District target).

For Indigenous students: 82 per cent (an increase of 21 per cent from the initial report; 16 per cent above target).

For Non-Indigenous students: 95 per cent (an increase of 17 per cent from the initial report; one per cent above target).

For male students: 82 per cent (an increase of 19 per cent from the initial report; five per cent above target).

For female students: 94 per cent (an increase of 22 per cent from the initial report; 17 per cent above target).

“The SD74 (Gold Trail) Board of Education, and other Boards in the province, are requesting that the Ministry of Education develop a new process that will facilitate an accurate reporting of information on completion rates,” says SD74 Board Chair Carmen Ranta. “More importantly, we ask that this information is not made public until it is more accurate. It is alarming and disrespectful to schools and communities when errors and inaccurate information portray completion rates that are poor in our District, when in fact they are very good, and improving.

“The public deserves accurate information, and we hope to work together with the Ministry of Education to provide this in future.”

Submitted

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