UPDATE: Local HS Graduation Rates For 2013; Rising Sun Contends Status As State’s Lowest

Posted On April 17, 2014

By Mike Perleberg

Rising Sun High School file photo

Rising Sun High School
file photo

Update published at 12:26 p.m.:

Rising Sun-Ohio County Community Schools superintendent Steve Patz says that after reviewing Rising Sun High School’s graduation data, he is certain the Indiana Department of Education’s assignment of a 65.5 percent graduation rate to the school is wrong.

“It didn’t take very long to find multiple errors,” Patz said after a morning of reviewing the 2013 graduation data Thursday.

Rising Sun schools administrators have attempted to get in touch with the appropriate people at the IDOE to have the data and graduation rate corrected. People in that department have taken a vacation day Thursday ahead of Friday’s scheduled Good Friday holiday for many state employees, Patz said.


Original story published at 9:07 a.m.:

(Rising Sun, Ind.) – A local high school has the dubious distinction of having the worst graduation rate in Indiana last year, but whether the number is accurate may be up for debate.

The Indiana Department of Education released the annual graduation data for public and private schools on Wednesday. The statewide graduation rate for public high schools was 88.6 percent for the 2012-2013 school year.

Rising Sun High School had just 65.5 percent of its seniors graduate. That’s 38 out of 58 students who should have graduated from the small school last year. By comparison, Indianapolis Public Schools and Gary Community Schools had grad rates of 68.3 and 68.9 percent, respectively, as districts.

Rising Sun-Ohio County Schools Superintendent Steve Patz said he does not believe the number from the IDOE to be accurate.

“I watched more kids cross the stage (at graduation ceremonies) than that last year,” Patz tells Eagle 99.3. “Things didn’t just fall off the face of the earth.”

Patz points to Rising Sun High School’s graduation rate in recent years. In 2012, 82.6 percent of seniors graduated. Nearly 90 percent earned their diploma in 2011.

The superintendent said he believes administrators know where the problem in the IDOE’s calculation may be and he plans to contact the department as soon as Thursday.

“We’re trying to figure out how they came to that determination so we can get it corrected,” said Patz.

Batesville High School had the highest graduation rate among public schools locally last year at 97.6 percent. Private high school Oldenburg Academy was just behind at 97.2 percent.

Most other southeast Indiana area high schools were 82 percent or better. High schools with a 94 percent or better graduation success rate were East Central, Lawrenceburg, and Switzerland County.

Only 22 high schools in the state achieved a 100 percent graduation rate, with 16 of those being non-public schools.

“There is some encouraging information in this release,” said Glenda Ritz, Indiana’s Superintendent of Public Instruction.  “While the overall graduation rate is largely the same as it was in 2012, when you dig into the data it becomes clear that more of our students are graduating without a waiver and passing their end of course assessments.  This is a crucial step in ensuring that our students graduate from high school both college and career ready.”


HIGH SCHOOL 2013 2012 2011 2010
Batesville 97.6 95.1 92.3 97.2
East Central 95.9 91.0 92.4 89.7
Franklin County 91.5 83.1 84.5 78.0
Jac-Cen-Del 85.7 86.5 78.4 70.4
Lawrenceburg 95.2 92.4 94.3 85.4
Milan 84.0 83.0 80.8 84.3
Oldenburg Academy 97.2 93.5 98.2 97.4
Rising Sun 65.5 82.6 89.8 84.6
South Dearborn 87.4 85.9 87.3 86.1
South Ripley 82.4 82.4 86.9 81.9
Switzerland County 94.8 86.0 84.2 76.9

I am a parent of a 2013 graduate of Rising Sun High School, and just counted the names of the seniors that were on the hand out they gave at the ceremony that day and there were 43 names on it. 43 out of 58 is still horrible in my book. I am glad we are done with that school all together. My oldest child wanted to finish there, but my younger child I transfered out of this school district last year. Rising Sun does not like to "embrace any change". Most of the teachers have no business teaching, if you hate your job, quit! Don't tell any child they will never amount to anything, or, you will go no where in your life. You dont tell a parent and a child that some kids get math and some dont, your kid doesnt. If students knew what kinds of options they had with other schools that are around here, Souh Dearborn, Lawrenceburg with just the different electives they had to choose from, it would open a whole new world to them. Careers or jobs or, "what they want to be, when they grow up" ,  so many options are there that Rising Sun Schools are not willing to make any changes at all. Not to mention a high school with no senior prom! Thats right the Rising Sun Church of Christ puts the prom on for the seniors, the school has NOTHING to do with it. Thank you to the church! And my child who graduated last year 2013, has yet to get his year book!! Called several times to the school, they say it is still in editing, 2 and 1/2 years later!! So I ask about the 2013 senior year book , well they decided they were not doing one now! But made all the boy seniors get there pictures taken with a collared shirt and tie, costing each parent $16.00  So Rising Sun School 2013 class did not get a junior or senior year book!!! 


I believe Rising "contests" the status rather than "contends" it.  I am a Rising Sun graduate, so i must have learned grammar there.


I graduated from RSHS in 2000.   The dropout rate was horrible then and not many went on to college.  Only 69 students graduated.  We had close to 100 freshman year.  This year less than 30 students will graduate.  Many have chosen to go to another school in the area or get their GED.  The majority of the teachers just don't care anymore.  What makes it worse is that they TELL THE STUDENTS THAT THEY DON"T CARE.  One teacher told my brother she was only there for a paycheck.  Many other teachers refuse to help struggling students or even answer questions.  What kind of teacher tells a child they are stupid?  What kind of teacher refuses to answer a question or explain something?  Well there is a very good reason graduation rates are so low at RSHS.  The teachers are terrible and the office staff does nothing when it is reported.  There are a few good teachers there (Mr Smith) but they cannot succeed on there own.  I think instead of trying to discredit the state's report Mr Patz should be trying to fix the problems in his school.