News Briefs

Graduation rates decline among Montgomery County students
Overall graduation rates among Montgomery County Public Schools students have declined, but among students with a Limited English Proficiency (LEP), they have spiked. According to a press release from MCPS, students for the Class of 2018 graduated at 88.4 percent, which is a 1.1 percent drop from the Class of 2017’s 89.5 percent graduation rate. Despite the drop, MCPS remains above Maryland’s graduation rate of 87.67 percent. Meanwhile, students with a Limited English Proficiency (LEP) have seen a significant increase in graduation rates. Those with an LEP in the Class of 2018 rose to 46.6 percent, up 5.9 percent from the Class of 2017’s LEP graduation rate of 40.7 percent.“We recognize that we have a lot of work ahead in supporting all of our students to reach their full potential, but this is an encouraging sign,” Superintendent Jack Smith said in the press release.

MCPS senior scholarship winners
According to an MCPS press release, 15 MCPS seniors won a corporate-sponsored scholarship including three students from this school. The National Merit Scholarship Corporation selected from more than 1000 finalists to award scholarships. The scholarships are financed by corporations, company foundations and other business organizations. The winners from this school are Andrew W. Jiang, considering psychiatry, Deepa S. Kori, considering business management and Xiwei Peng, considering biomedical engineering. The press release reports that most awards are renewable for up to four years of college undergraduate study. The payments vary from $500 to up to $10,000 annually. Some awards provide a one-time payment of $2,500 to $5,000. The awards can be used at any regionally accredited U.S. college or university.

Montgomery County Department of Transportation offers unlimited transportation this summer
In hopes of promoting public transportation travel for younger people around the county, the Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT) is sponsoring a program to provide unlimited transportation over the summer. The Youth Cruiser SmarTrip Card is a program that allows those 18 and younger to get unlimited rides between June 1 and Aug. 31 from 2 to 8 p.m.. Regardless of age, those still in high school are eligible for the Youth Cruiser program. The card can be used on any RideOn bus within Montgomery County. Any travel outside the county requires that the card has money. The fee for unlimited rides is $18. An extra $2 is required in order to obtain the card itself. Youth Cruiser cards are available at all County libraries, the Montgomery County Treasury, eligible Giant Food, CVS and other retail stores or even online at through July 15.

Joaquin Moreno, staff writer