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August 22, 2009 - Records rank Lee second in state - (Albany Herald) After posting average composite scores better than the national and state averages on the national admission and placement ACT test earlier this week, Lee County was recognized by the Governor's Office of Student Achievement in a first of its kind study.

After posting average composite scores better than the national and state averages on the national admission and placement ACT test earlier this week, Lee County was recognized by the Governor's Office of Student Achievement in a first of its kind study.

For its Class of 2008, Lee County had 80 percent of its graduates enroll in postsecondary institutions. Only Schley County High in Ellaville had a better postsecondary rate in the state at 80.3 percent. The state average was 64.7 percent.

Since 2000 to 2007, Lee County High graduates have enrolled in postsecondary institutions 78.2 percent. The 1,956 graduates attending these institutions have produced 918 college degrees.

"We're glad to see that most of our students are continuing their education," Lee County Superintendent Lawrence Walters said. "The feedback that we receive from many of these students is that they do feel that their high school education has prepared them well for their college education. And, we do check that often."

Walters also wanted to credit the parents of Lee County's graduates for the Governor's Office of Student Achievement's affirmation for the school system's efforts.

"We have a lot of families in Lee County who do value education and that is very encouraging," he said.

Darton College was the school of choice for Lee County's graduates with 584 of them enrolling in the school from 2000-07. Albany Technical College was second with 328 graduates, followed by Georgia Southwestern State University with 150, Valdosta State University with 127 and Georgia Southern University with 104.

Dougherty County School System had 65.04 percent of its 2008 graduates enroll in postsecondary institutions to rank it 44th in the state out of 172 school systems. Westover Comprehensive High School had a 73.8 percent, Albany High had 62.9 percent, Monroe Comprehensive had 60.1 percent and Dougherty Comprehensive had 60 percent.

From 2000 to 2007, Albany Technical College was the school of choice for Dougherty County School System graduates with 1,030 students enrolling in the institution. Darton College was next with 983 students, followed by Albany State University with 533, Valdosta State with 152 and Georgia Southern with 111.

Since 2000 to 2007, DCSS graduates have enrolled in postsecondary institutions 71.9 percent. The 4,193 graduates attending these schools have produced 1,640 college degrees.

Albany Tech was also the school of choice for Mitchell and Terrell county school system graduates from 2000 to 2007.

The Governor's Office of Student Achievement confirmed to Albany Tech President Anthony Parker how the school is regarded by many students in Southwest Georgia.

"It indicates that we're an excellent choice," he said. "People have realized the strength of our (workforce education) programs and how it can improve the quality of their lives.

"Our students are working in this community, 77 percent of our graduates are placed within 30 miles of downtown Albany and that benefits the area that they're educated in," he added. "We certainly want as many students as possible to take advantage of the benefits of higher education. We had record graduation for the fiscal year that ended June 30, with 2,054 (graduates) and that's up over 400 from last year."

Research from the Governor's Office of Student Achievement revealed that technical colleges ranked among the top 10 most popular institutions in 165 school systems for graduates of the classes of 2000 to 2007. A technical college was the top choice for 62 of those systems.

The under 21 age group enrollment at all Technical College System of Georgia institutions has almost doubled from 2000 to 2009. It has grown 86 percent from 22,742 students to 42,199 students, according to information provided by Albany Tech's marketing department.

Mitchell County School System had a 61.34 percent of its 2008 graduates enroll in postsecondary education for a state ranking of 78. Baconton Community Charter School had 78.1 percent of its graduates enroll in colleges or universities and Mitchell County High had 55.2 percent of its grads do the same.

From 2000 to 2007, Albany Tech, Darton and Southwest Georgia Technical College were the top choices for Mitchell County graduates with 134 choosing Albany Tech, 123 Darton and 100 picking Southwest. During the same time span, 679 graduates attended postsecondary institutions with 264 college degrees produced.

Worth County High School had 61.21 percent of its 2008 graduates enroll in postsecondary education for a state ranking of 80. Abraham Baldwin College was the top pick for Worth grads from 2000 to 2007 with 233 of them choosing the Tifton school. Darton was the second pick with 196 and Albany Tech was third with 191 grads. During the same time period, Worth had 1,091 graduates attending secondary institutions with 592 degrees produced.

Terrell County High School had 59.6 percent of its 2008 graduates enroll in postsecondary education for a state ranking of 99. From 2000 to 2007, it had 103 of its graduates enroll in Albany Tech, 37 choose Darton and 33 picked Albany State. During that time, 299 were attending postsecondary schools with 87 degrees produced.

The University of Georgia was the most popular postsecondary institution in terms of enrollment for Georgia's Class of 2008 with 3,347 students. Georgia Perimeter College was second with 3,045 students, Georgia Southern was third with 2,510. No Southwest Georgia institution made the top 10.

Auburn University was the most popular out-of-state choice with 428 students, the University of Alabama was second with 380 students and Jacksonville State was third with 267 students.



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