Ohio grad rate high

Every day for the second half of her junior year, Dylan Thompson’s geometry teacher met her after school to tutor her.

“Her tutoring was the only reason I passed the class,” said Thompson, a freshmen at the University and a 2004 graduate of Bowling Green High School.

Thompson added that many of her teachers were willing to meet with her and help her outside class.

That same year, Thompson failed two classes which hurt her grade point average and put her a little behind. At the suggestion of her parents, she went to Sylvan Learning Center for extra tutoring.

“My teachers and counselors were really helpful in communicating with Sylvan and allowing them to help me,” Thompson said.

Dedication and helpfulness like Thompson experienced is one of the reasons so many students graduate from Bowling Green High School.

Bowling Green High School’s graduation rate of 96.3 percent for the 2004-2005 school year is well above the national average of 70 percent.

It was also recently announced that Ohio ranks ninth in the nation for public high school graduation rates.

Statistics from the 2002 to 2003 school year shows that 79 percent of high school seniors in Ohio graduated during this time. These statistics are based on the number of students who graduate in either the spring or summer, if they need to take summer courses or state tests again.

“It’s really good for Ohio, but it means we still have a lot of work to do,” said Karla Carruthers, a representative from the Ohio Department of Education.

While it’s nice that Ohio is ranked in the top 10, “there are still eight other states ahead of us,” added Carruthers.

Individual schools and districts, like Bowling Green Area Schools, help make such a high ranking possible.

Like Thompson experienced, the staff at Bowling Green High School does many things to make sure the students graduate, which is reflected in the high graduation rate.

“We provide encouragement, guidance counselors talk to students and parents and we work with students and teachers to improve grades,” said Joan Tussing, guidance counselor at Bowling Green High School.

According to Tussing, when the traditional high school setting doesn’t work for students, the staff at BGHS makes every effort to find one – like Penta Career Center – that does.

Other options like occupational work experience and making up some courses over the summer can also help a student catch up and be able to graduate.

“If one thing doesn’t work, we try something else,” Tussing said.

If a student isn’t coming to class or isn’t doing their homework, teachers and guidance counselors will sit down with the student and their parents to find the underlying problem. The staff at BGHS will then work to fix that problem and get the student back on the right track, said Tussing.

However, despite all these options, some students don’t graduate.

“There are a few kids where everyone tries to do everything to help them,” Tussing said. “It comes down to individual motivation sometimes.”

It takes everyone working together to make sure each student is as successful as they can be and that they make it to graduation day.

“It’s a real team approach,” Tussing said. “You can’t depend on just one person to do it.”