Tacoma’s graduation rate reaches record high of 89.3 percent 


Tacoma’s graduation rate for the Class of 2018 reached 89.3 percent—the highest since the state began officially tracking the statistic in 2003 and the eighth straight year of gains, according to data submitted to the state by Tacoma Public Schools.

“What has become increasingly clear as the graduation rate has continued to rise,” said Superintendent Carla Santorno, “is that we have created a culture of high expectations and success in schools across the district where everyone is involved and contributing.”

After the release of the Class of 2011 graduation rate of 61.7 percent, the School Board set a bold goal in 2012—graduate 85 percent of Tacoma students by 2020. At the time, 85 percent sounded like a stretch to many, especially considering that in 2007 a national researcher labeled all Tacoma’s comprehensive high schools as “dropout factories” in a news story published across the country. And as recently as 2010, Tacoma high schools graduated 55 percent of students.

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