For many parents, this is a time of year to be particularly proud; their high school student has just graduated, and as they learned during their commencement address, the "sky is the limit" for their aspirations.
Or is it?
For students of certain colors in California, maybe not.
State high schools that serve primarily Latino or African American students are too often not passing the grade when it comes to moving those students forward educationally, according to a new report issued this week by a group called the Education Trust-West. Schools are not providing "pathways to college."
After the group combined graduation and college-going rate data, they estimated college-going rates for ninth graders from the class of 2010.
The analysis suggests that college-going rates for African-American and Latino ninth grade students "lag behind the rates of white and Asian students by 20 to more than 30 percentage points, with fewer than half of those ninth graders going to college five years later—or, shortly after their projected high school graduation date."
"Far too few schools with large populations of African American, Latino and low-income students are serving as pipelines to post-secondary education," according to the report, calling the finding "disturbing."
Locally, Peninsula schools may be in much better shape.
According to San Bruno local editor Martin Ricard, made among black, Latino, Filipino and Pacific Islander students in graduation rates.
According to Ricard, "the graduation rate among all ethnic groups was 89 percent or higher. For African Americans—11 students—the rate was 100 percent. For Pacific Islanders, the rate was 90 percent, a significant increase from the year before, when only 65 percent of those students earned a diploma."
The California problem has future implications. According to the report, "California’s workforce is projected to need an additional one million college graduates by 2025. To meet this challenge, California’s college and career pipeline must serve as a true pathway to post-secondary success for all California’s students. (Yet there are) major gaps in college opportunity for the low-income students and students of color who are the majority of California’s student population."
What do you think? Are high schools in our area serving their African-American and Latino students well? Are we in better shape than the rest of the state, as seen by the Capuchino statistics? Are those students moving on to college and college-oriented programs? Or are students - Bay Area and statewide - lagging behind their colleagues, especially Asian and white, and missing out on future opportunities that may come through an advanced education?
Let us know in the comments. Then vote in our poll.