Trending: Where Grads Go On

nt0614bethelhs-2045It’s high school graduation week! Twelfth graders across the state will be crossing the stage this weekend to grab their diplomas and begin a new chapter of their lives. And for most of the students in Southwestern Connecticut, that next stage includes a four-year college.

According to data from the State Department of Education, about two in three students (66.3 percent) of students graduating from the public high schools in our area will be heading off to a four-year school after they depart their hometown high schools. Of those who are moving on, the greatest share will head to private colleges out of state. In 2010, the most recent year for which data was available, about 29 percent of Southwestern Connecticut high school grads headed off to such schools. Six percent tried out private colleges in state, while 20 percent entered Connecticut’s public college network and about 12 percent made their way to public schools in other states.

In total, Southwestern Connecticut sends more of its alums on to four-year schools than the state as a whole. According to the education department’s database, a total of 57.4 percent of Connecticut’s graduating class of 2010 went on to four-year colleges.

Check out which high schools have the highest share of graduates going on to four-year colleges:

As you scroll through the slideshow, you may notice the difference between where certain schools are sending their grads. For example, each of the 11 high schools with the highest percentage of high school graduates heading off to college have a heavy leaning toward sending their kids to private schools out of state, while most others send the majority of these graduates to in-state public schools. In fact, other than the top 11 high schools in this ranking, there are only two others where the greatest share of college-bound kids head off to such schools: Westhill High School and the Academy of Information Technology & Engineering, both located in Stamford.

You may also notice that perennial school-chart topper Darien is nowhere to be found in the slideshow. It’s not a snub. For some reason, the State Department of Education doesn’t have 2010 listed for the Blue Wave. But if their 2009 report is any indicator, the school would have just missed the top 5, coming in at No. 6 with 89.4 percent of students heading off to four-year colleges, and 70.3 percent of those kids going to private schools out of state.


Maggie Gordon