Green Bay Graduation Rates Increase

District sees double digit increases for Native American, Black, and Hispanic students; Green Bay East and West High Schools show significant gains

New data shows that graduation rates across the Green Bay Area Public School District have increased, with significant gains for African American/Black students, Hispanic, and Native American students.  Additionally, the district outpaced the state in growth in all areas, and Green Bay East and West High Schools saw significant gains in the two reported graduation categories: four-year cohort rates (students who graduate in four years) and legacy rates (students who take more than four years to graduate).

“This is encouraging news as we look to ensure that all student graduates are college, career and community ready,” said Michelle Langenfeld, superintendent of schools and learning. “Our staff has been working very hard to increase graduation rates for all student groups. We are definitely trending in the right direction.”

Legacy rates show significant increases in district students graduating high school

The 2010-2011 Green Bay district legacy graduation rate was 86.23 percent, an increase of 5.03 percentage points over the 2009-2010 rate of 81.20 percent.  The state gain was six-tenths of a percentage point from 2009-10 (89.9%) to 2010-11 (90.5%). Legacy graduation rates include students who are fifth year seniors because they enrolled in the district deficient in credits or were facing external issues that may have prevented them from attending school. The rate also includes English Language Learners (ELL) who entered the district at an older age and special education students; both groups may choose to stay enrolled until 20-years of age.  The district has a higher percentage of enrollments of ELL and special education students than many districts in the state.

Significant gains in the legacy rate were made at Green Bay East (87.11 percent) and West (86.92 percent) high schools, with increases of 6.0 percentage points and 6.3 percentage points respectively. Green Bay Preble and Southwest high schools remained stable. All four high schools had more students of color graduating, with significant gains across all ethnic groups. There were double digit gains for Native American (+10.8), African American/Black (+14.9), and Hispanic (+11.7) students.

“Recently we celebrated the success of Preble and Southwest High Schools being named as top 15 Wisconsin Schools by U.S. News and World Report,” said Langenfeld. “However, the schools to watch are East and West High Schools. We are very encouraged by their gains. The combination of hard work by staff at all levels and the programs in those schools, such as International Baccalaureate, AVID, and the Institute for the Fine Arts, are turning East and West into two very alluring schools in the community.”

Table 1: Green Bay High School Legacy Graduation Rates

  2008-09 2009-10 2010-11 Change 2010-11 State
District 78.6% 81.2% 86.2% +5.03 90.5%
Native American 45.3% 52.3% 63.1% +10.8 77.4%
Asian 85.1% 85.9% 91.7% +5.8 93.7%
Black 38.4% 46.6% 61.5% +14.9 69.7%
Hispanic 70.7% 64.1% 75.8% +11.7 80.7%
White 85.3% 90.0% 92.1% +2.1 94.1%
Economically Disadvantaged 70.8% 75.4% 79.3% +3.9 82.3%
Not Economically Disadvantaged 82.7% 84.7% 91.0% +6.3 93.5%
ELL 71.6% 66.2% 76.5% +10.3 79.1%
English Proficient 79.3% 82.7% 87.4% +4.7 90.8%
With Disabilities 69.8% 72.6% 65.4% (-6.2) 80.7%
Without Disabilities 80.5% 83.0% 90.3% +7.3 91.8%


Four-year cohort rates show more Green Bay students graduating in four years

The district saw double digit gains with African American/Black students (+10.7) graduating in four years, and significant gains with Asian (+5.6) and Hispanic students (+6.5). Green Bay Area Public Schools also saw 2.80 percentage point gains for all students, which is double the state’s 1.30 percentage point gain. The four-year cohort rate counts only the students who earn a regular diploma within four years of starting high school, including summer graduates. This is the second year Wisconsin reported graduation rates using the four-year cohort formula as required by the U.S. Department of Education.

Green Bay East (76.5 percent) and West (74.1 percent) high schools saw significant gains in their four-year cohort rates, at 3.0 percentage points and 7.0 percentage points, respectively.  Preble and Southwest high schools remained stable.

Table 2: 4-Year Cohort Graduation Rates

  2009-10 2010-11 Change 2010-11 State
District 74.9% 77.7% +2.80 87.00%
Native American 47.1% 47.5% +0.40 71.70%
Asian 75.8% 81.4% +5.60 88.40%
Black 41.0% 51.7% +10.70 63.80%
Hispanic 57.4% 63.9% +6.50 72.00%
White 84.0% 85.8% +1.8 91.40%
Economically Disadvantaged 63.2% 64.3% +1.1 82.3%
Not Economically Disadvantaged 82.9% 88.8% +5.9 93.5%
ELL 54.1% 62.2% +8.1 66.0%
English Proficient 77.0% 79.7% +2.7 90.8%
With Disabilities 56.8% 57.3% +0.5 80.7%
Without Disabilities 79.1% 81.7% +1.6 91.8%

“Public education is an investment in the community,” said Langenfeld. “We feel that our increasing graduation rates for all children demonstrates a worthy investment of taxpayer dollars. Our staff will continue to work on closing the achievement gap while continuing to provide students with a clear pathway to their future.”

For access to district and state graduation data, go to and type in “Green Bay Area” under “By District.”

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