A study by a non-profit group based in Virginia shows that the majority of students graduating each year from Waterville High School attend college.
The data collected by the National Student Clearinghouse for the last 10 years launched a discussion at last week’s Waterville Board of Education meeting about how success should be defined and whether college should be pushed as a goal for every student.
WCS Superintendent Dr. Jennifer Spring said the information collected showed percentages of students attending a two or four-year college out of high school, returning the next year and earning a degree. For the Waterville decade looked at, the average class size was 64.
In 2018 56 percent of the class went to college, while the 2019 class had 70 percent enroll after graduation. That dipped for the Class of 2020.
Spring said the data shows the majority of students attend a four-year public college in New York state. The most frequently attended colleges are Mohawk Valley Community College, Morrisville, Utica College and Onondaga Community College, WCS has sent 92 students to MVCC in the last 10 years.
For the past three years, no student in special education classes has attended college. Female graduates have a higher rate of attending college than do the males in a class.
Of those who attend college, 79 percent returned for a second year. Spring said the rate is higher for those attending a private college, but there are fewer students in that category.
The Class of 2013 had 47 percent earn a college degree, with the majority coming from a four-year college. The rate was 42 percent for the Class of 2014.
Data showed that non-economically disadvantaged students had a higher rate of attending and graduating than economically disadvantaged students.
Board member Susy Quayle said she was not that gung ho about the data showing success, saying she knows people who would not fit into those categories but are successful. “Wisdom comes in many forms,’’ she said. “I don’t want to be judged for my worth if someone gives me a C or D.’’
Board President Steve Stanton said he would like to know more about students who start college but do not finish. “Why is that? Could we have done something else as a school?’’
Stanton said the district needs to see that data to make sure students are being supported for the best outcome. “Almost no one goes out of…