Lubbock region falls short in students graduating from higher ed

Lubbock region falls short in students graduating from higher ed

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

Children face a number of challenges in and out of school, many of which can affect how successful they are.

Schools across the South Plains are performing slightly better than average when it comes to graduating high schoolers however not so well when it comes to getting them to college and a degree.

Of the approximately 300,000 Texas eighth graders from 2006, only 21 percent actually graduated from college according to data from the Texas Education Agency and Higher Education Coordinating Boards

In the Lubbock region, that number  is slightly lower, only 20 percent. 

"It's not a one size fits all. A high school diploma though should mean you're ready for the next step," said Charlotte Sessom, Director of Counseling and College Career Readiness at Lubbock ISD.

When it comes to college, the rate in which Texas students graduate would appear as if they are not ready.

"For some students they start in college and they just can't keep paying for it," Sessom said. "For some I think the readiness of how to balance it all, for some students this is the first time living on their own, they're capable, they're very capable but it's the self discipline."

That is where programs like Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) and Learn Inc. help. They help students understand what all is required to be successful past high school.

"We've reexamined how we educate in the high school level and the state has helped us do that," she said. "I think the next step is what are we doing at the college level to make sure students have the support they need."

This means ensuring students can afford college and are in the right program.

"We try to address those pieces in terms of are we advising students well, are they in the right majors that they are responding to, do they have the interest, the passion and the ability to complete those degrees, and then can they afford to pay for college and for the most part we try to work with each individual student in a case by case basis to make sure we can fit them into those scenarios," said Ethan Logan, Associate VP for Enrollment Management at Texas Tech.

At the end of the day Sessom said college is not for everyone and the schools must prepare every student to be equally successful.

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