Maryland high school graduation rates have increased

EDUCATION | According to a new report by the Maryland State Department of Education, graduation rates have increased slightly across the state. Rates improved among students who receive free and reduced meals, special-education students, and black students. There was a small decline among students with limited English proficiency. (Baltimore Sun, 1/24)

Graduation rates improved statewide for the class of 2016 across 10 jurisdictions, including by 1.13 percentage points in Baltimore and 1.08 points in Anne Arundel County, according to the data.

The rates fell slightly in several Baltimore suburbs. Harford County’s graduation rate dipped to 89.09 percent, down 0.85 of a point. Howard County decreased by roughly a quarter of a point to 93.21 percent, and Carroll dropped about three-quarters of a point to 95.13 percent.

Prince George’s, Montgomery, Calvert, Cecil, Queen Anne’s, Caroline and Dorchester counties also saw gains. Cecil County showed the largest gain, rising about 2.9 percentage points.

EQUITY | Anthony Pleasant, Owner of Pleasant Assembly, discusses the barriers that exist for returning citizens, including network and perception, and encourages funders to take more risks. (Daily, 1/25)

– A bill that would block D.C. from using local tax dollars to subsidize abortion services for low-income women has passed in the House. (WaPo, 1/24)

– Maryland Governor Larry Hogan has introduced new measures to address the state’s opioid epidemic. (WaPo, 1/24)

– Language may impact diabetes care for Latinos with limited English (Reuters, 1/23)

LGBTQ | Virginia Senate committee approves two pro-LGBT bills (Washington Blade, 1/23)

ARTS & HUMANITIES | A new exhibit at the Smithsonian’s Anacostia Community Museum will explore the Latinx experience in the Baltimore, Washington, Raleigh-Durham, and Charlotte metropolitan areas. (HillRag, 1/24)

CRIMINAL JUSTICE | A D.C. councilmember wants to offer police officers eligible for retirement an incentive to stay on the force: doubling their salary in their fifth year. (WaPo, 1/25)

IMMIGRATION | A Virginia undocumented immigrant rights activist loses her battle to avoid being deported (WaPo, 1/25)

Another red panda is loose in the area…