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Aug 18, 2014 11:27 PM by Allison Bourne-Vanneck

Vermilion Parish Makes Top Five Highest High School Graduation Rate

It may be the beginning of the school year, but in Vermilion Parish, there's already talk of graduation. That's because its graduation rate is the highest in Acadiana.

According to the most recent numbers from the Department of Education, Vermilion Parish is in the top five in the state. It has the fourth highest graduation rate, with 89 percent of its students graduating.

One factor Superintendent Jerome Puyau credits for the high graduation rate are new classes at Abbeville High School, which take a college approach.

"We started offering what we call Vermilion University, which is at Abbeville High, and what we offer is any technical field in diesel mechanics, nursing, and we also have welding where students learn those skills," said Vermilion Parish Superintendent Jerome Puyau.

This year, for the first time, students can also stay on campus to take technical classes.

"They can see a future in it, and that's going to keep them in school. And it's going to give them incentive to do well in school, not only in their technical courses, but in their academic courses as well," said Supervisor for Career Tech Education Lonnie Richard.

Superintendent Puyau also credits dual enrollment college courses for helping students succeed.

"Students from any area, any school in our district, take LSU courses right now. The LSU courses are the same freshmen are taking at LSU right now. Our students in junior and senior year in our schools are taking (those same classes). So they they can be successful. So things like that, that we put in place, have made it a good transition. So students know when they get out and go to college, they will be able to pass, so more and more students are staying in our schools," Puyau said.

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