Jackson Hole High School 2019 commencement ceremony

Students filter in to the gym during Jackson Hole High School’s 2019 commencement ceremony. The 2018-19 class in Teton County had a graduation rate of 94%, a more than 6 percentage point increase over the class before it.

Wyoming’s high schoolers are graduating at a higher rate than in years past, and Teton County’s kids saw a significant jump over last year.

For the sixth consecutive year, the state’s four-year high school graduation rate rose, from 81.7% in the 2017-18 cohort to 82.1% for the 2018-19 senior class. The rate has increased each year since 2012-13, when 77.6% of seniors graduated in four year, making a cumulative 4.5 percentage point rise during that time.

The state follows the U.S. Department of Education’s four-year adjusted cohort methodology to calculate its graduation rate. The framework requires that students obtain a degree by Sept. 15 following their cohort’s fourth year, so it allows kids who take summer courses to graduate to still be counted in the “on-time” category.

“Wyoming has reached the highest graduation rate under this methodology, which was put in place over a decade ago,” State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow said in a press release. “More Wyoming students are prepared to succeed in college careers and military service.”

Teton County School District No. 1 was one of 16 districts in the state with an on-time graduation rate above 90%. The district’s 94% graduation rate was good for eighth in the state. It was a 6.2 percentage point increase over 2017-18.

Teton County students usually rank highly among those around the state, with last year being the only school year in the past five that less than 93.5% of students graduated.

Five- and six-year graduation rates are generally higher than “on-time” rates. Both have increased in Wyoming in the past five to six years, but they are not yet available for the 2018-19 cohort. Rates for five-year graduates in a class are published the year after “on-time” ones, and six-year rates are released two years after.

Contact Tom Hallberg at 732-7079 or thallberg@jhnewsandguide.com.

Tom Hallberg covers a little bit of everything, from skiing to long-form feature stories. A Teton Valley, Idaho, transplant by way of Portland and Bend, Oregon, he spends his time outside work writing fiction, splitboarding and climbing.

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