Increasing High School Success

While Colorado's four-year graduation rate has steadily increased from 78.8 percent in 2015 to 80.7 percent in 2018, our high school graduation rate ranks 45th in the nation. The good news is we know that there are proven strategies to support ninth grade students in their "make or break" year. 


The transition from eighth to ninth grade is a critical time that determines a student’s trajectory in high school. Rigor­ous studies have found a 9th grade student’s “on-track” status is a stronger predictor of high school graduation than their race/ethnicity, level of poverty, or test scores combined.

A student that finishes ninth grade “on-track,” meaning with one quarter of the credits needed to graduate and without more than one F in a core subject, is four times more likely to graduate. But for students who fall behind in these early months, the scramble to catch up can be overwhelming as lesson after lesson builds upon content they never learned.

Our Center for High School Success (CHSS) supports schools in focusing on this critical eighth to ninth grade transition period. CHSS provides tailored supports to partner schools in real-time,  which puts students on track to graduate before they have the chance to fall behind.

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