Union City High School Scores Near-Perfect Graduation Rate - WICU12 HD WSEE Erie, PA News, Sports, Weather and Events

Union City High School Scores Near-Perfect Graduation Rate

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Seventy-five Union City High School seniors graduated on Thursday evening. At 97.4 percent, it's the highest graduation rate by percentage in all of Erie County.

The class of 2014's valedictorian, Troy Jackson, largely attributes their classes success to their teachers.

"They're wonderful. They work one-on-one with you, so if you need help, they're there for you. If you need to study, help with math, they do it all. They stay after school," Jackson said. He plans to attend Westminster College by Grove City, and is still deciding on his major.

Other graduates say the small class sizes help too.

"My smallest class was 11 students this year. We keep the sizes small and you get better learning, better interaction," Carrie Brown, another Class of 2014 Union City grad. Brown plans on attending Edinboro University in the fall.

The district's superintendent, Dr. Sandra Myers, also credits a relatively new truancy and support program the district implemented a few years ago.

"We had a look at the support system that our students needed in order to keep them in school," Myers said. "Once we built the truancy system, we also had to create a support program. The two go hand-in-hand," she said.

The new program helps  pinpoint when, and why a student might be in the danger zone.

Back in 2009 Union City's graduation rate was just 92 percent, compared to Fairview High School's 98.5 percent. But with the new support system, the high school has seen near 100 percent graduation rates each year.

By 2011, Union City's graduation rate was 98.2 percent. Fairview's 2011 graduation rate was 97.3. The two school districts are neck-and-neck each year.

"The (truancy and support) program has really paid off for us," Myers said.

Union City's 2014 graduating class will see five of its members join the military.

Nearly 50 percent of the grads are continuing their education in science, technology, engineering, and math fields, reflecting the emphasis on STEM recently implemented at Union City HS.

"You're scared for the future, but it's really exciting. And sad to leave your friends, of course," Brown said "It's amazing but really bittersweet."

"It feels great, it's starting a new chapter of your life and I'm really excited to get it started," Jackson said.


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