Students are Trading in their Graduation Caps for More Books

Students are Trading in their 
Graduation Caps for More Books

HASLETT - It’s that time of the year again where high school seniors all over the nation walk across the stage, get handed their diploma and can finally say they've graduated. But graduating from high school takes more than just walking across the stage. High schools are preparing students with the skills needed to go to 2- or 4-year institutions even more now than in recent years.

“In order to graduate, it takes 13 years of education, 13 years of hard work on apart of the student, but also in support of the parents. This would not happen without their efforts and keeping the student on track,” said Linda Forward, Director of the Office of Education Improvement and Innovation at the Michigan Department of Education.

The high school graduation rate is 77%, which is up from 75% just four years ago. Over the past few years, high school graduation rates have roughly remained the same at Haslett High School. They had 234 graduates this year.

“I think that all of our seniors understand that to graduate from high school right now is not enough, that there does need to be additional training, additional academic preparation for them to be successful,” said Haslett High School Principal, Bart Wegenke.

“Those who actually enroll in college used to be about 50 percent. Now, first year enrollment is about 60 percent and that’s up over the last five years from 50 to 60,” said Forward.

Haslett is preparing their students to further their education and even has 100 percent of their seniors fill out college applications.

“The reason we do that is because we can appreciate, here at Haslett High School, that additional training is going to be needed by all of our students in order to be successful in the next phase of their life,” said Wegenke.

“We’ve got all manner of things that students need to know before they can get into college, before they can go into a job somewhere,” said Forward. “The job market has changed. So if the job market’s changed, the expectations change.”

Research shows that students who don’t get additional education or training make significantly less money over a lifetime resulting in more struggles.

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