Ninth Grade Success
A good start to high school sets a foundation for success that lasts for years. Students who have a good start are sometimes more than four times as likely to graduate prepared for career and college, compared with their peers. But transitioning to high school isn’t always easy. Some students struggle with attendance issues, passing courses or earning strong grades. Our work to promote ninth grade success centers on three strategies.
Miss no more than eight days of school. Students who miss eight or fewer days of school as they transition from middle school to high school are about 10 percent more likely to graduate prepared for success. Most students who fall off track during this time as many 14 days of school, on average. Our work in this area centers on creating a culture where getting to school is expected and supported in the community. Success on this strategy will be measured by the proportion of students who miss eight or fewer days of school in ninth grade.
Earn at least 6.5 credits by the end of ninth grade. Earning at least 6.5 credits before the end of ninth grade can help students get on the path toward college readiness. Some students will have a chance to earn high school credit while in middle school, which gives them a head start. If students can earn at least 6.5 credits before the end of ninth grade, they will have more time to take additional college-level courses at the end of high school. Success on this strategy will be measured by the proportion of students who finish ninth grade with at least 6.5 credits.
Maintain a B or B+ average. Students who maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.1 or higher will graduate prepared for career and college readiness at least 75 percent of the time. Students who finish ninth grade with a GPA lower than 3.1 graduate “ready” less than half the time. The measure of our success in this strategy will be the proportion of students who finish their first year in high school with a minimum GPA of 3.1 and at least 6.5 cumulative credits.