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High School Graduation Rates & School Accreditation in Missouri

David H. Hickman High School graduating seniors listen to fellow senior Zophia McDougal speak at Mizzou Arena on Saturday, May 21, 2011. (Clint Alwahab/Missourian)


One of our ongoing goals at Missouri Parent is to help you — the Missouri public school parent — to understand the MSIP5, or the Missouri School Improvement Plan. Today, we’ll tell you how MSIP5 uses high school graduation rates to help determine school accreditation.

MSIP is Missouri’s accountability system for reviewing and accrediting public school districts. It was introduced in 1990, and it’s currently in its 5th cycle, or MSIP5.

Want a quick overview of MSIP? Read this short blog post.

Over the last several weeks, we’ve detailed each of the 5 Performance Standards that are evaluated under MSIP5. Graduation Rates are the fifth MSIP Performance Standard. Each of those five Performance Standards is part of the total Annual Performance Report (APR) score earned by a school or district under MSIP5. The state uses those APRs to help determine the accreditation status of each school or district.

When Missouri refers to Graduation Rate in its Performance Standards, it’s referring to the rate of students who successfully complete high school or an education program that meets the state’s requirements for high school equivalency.

Four-year graduation rates, 5+ year graduation rates, and alternative/non-traditional graduation rates (like the GED or the new HiSET exam) are all examples of successful high school completion under MSIP5.

One important thing to understand about Missouri’s school systems is that not all of them continue through the 12th grade. If a school or a school district only provides K-8 education (as opposed to K-12 education), that school or district is not held accountable for high school graduation rate-based performance standards under MSIP5.

As with most MSIP5 metrics for school success, Graduation Rate follows a complex formula. The overarching expectation of Missouri’s schools is to reach a 92 percent five-year graduation rate by the year 2020. For accountability purposes, the state set an 82 percent graduation rate goal for the year 2012.

For detailed information about MSIP5, visit the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education online.

For more from the Missouri Parents Blog on MSIP5, see these posts:

What is the Missouri School Improvement Program?
5 Ways Your Student’s School is Evaluated for Accreditation
Academic Achievement & School Accreditation
What are Subgroups, and How Does Missouri Measure Their Achievement?
15 Missouri School Districts Earn 100% on Annual Performance Reviews

Photo credit: Columbia Missourian

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