Pandemic impacted vulnerable populations of class of 2022

The CCRI report shows how the pandemic affected the class of 2022’s college enrollment and more.

University of Hawaiʻi
Erin M Yagi, (808) 956-2271
Comm Spec & Leg Lead, Hawaii P-20 Partnerships for Education
Posted: Mar 22, 2023

From the abrupt switch to online learning in the fourth quarter of their 10th grade year to returning to in-person instruction in the last quarter of 12th grade, students in Hawaiʻi’s public high school class of 2022 experienced unprecedented disruptions to their high school careers. These experiences impacted the recent graduating class' post-high college enrollment, as reflected in the data in this year’s College and Career Readiness Indicators (CCRI) report. Since 2009, the CCRI has provided information on the academic achievement of public school graduates and how well they have transitioned to college.

College enrollment rates have risen slightly to 51% after dipping to 50% at the start of the pandemic, but the rate for the class of 2022 is still four percentage points lower than pre-pandemic levels. This mirrors a nationwide trend of a slow recovery of college enrollment. 

Pandemic impacts and recovery have differed for various student groups. Native Hawaiian students saw the largest declines in college enrollment rates, decreasing from 44% in the class of 2019 to 35% in the class of 2020, and further dropping to 34% in the classes of 2021 and 2022. The statewide on-time high school graduation rates also have dipped from 86% to 85%.

The CCRI also provides valuable insight into how public school graduates have transitioned into college-level coursework at the University of Hawaiʻi. For those from the class of 2022 who enrolled at UH (both four-year and community college campuses), 46% had completed a college-level math course in high school or enrolled in college-level math in their first semester, a one percentage point drop from the class of 2021. However, for English, the percentage of students who completed a college-level English course in high school or enrolled in a college-level English course in their first semester dropped six percentage points to 59%, its lowest level since 2016.

“The class of 2022 experienced the brunt of the pandemic, which disproportionately impacted our most vulnerable populations,” said Hawaiʻi State Department of Education (DOE) Deputy Superintendent Tammi Oyadomari-Chun. “We pay close attention to trends in CCRI outcomes since the CCRI provides the most consistent data of post-high outcomes of our graduates. The data are used to inform planning and support at the school and state levels as well as our partnership with the UH.”

“The CCRI is an objective view of the performance of the graduated class. The headline of this year’s CCRI is that we are not seeing as many of our students continuing their education after graduation as in the past. What gives us reason for optimism is we have alignment among the DOE, UH and the broader education community to ensure that our students have more opportunities to further their education after high school and find good careers right here at home in Hawaiʻi,” said Hawaiʻi P-20 Partnerships for Education Executive Director Stephen Schatz.

UH President David Lassner added, “We are excited about the work to build pathways from high school to college and the workforce. Our 10 campuses have great programs for high school graduates, whether they envision becoming teachers, welders, doctors or entrepreneurs. And regardless of the pathway they choose, we want our public school graduates to know that there is a place for them at UH.”

Hawai‘i’s CCRI reports are continuously recognized by national organizations, including the Data Quality Campaign, Achieve and the National Governors Association, as a leading example of collaboration between K-12 and higher education and for providing useful information on college readiness. The full reports and CCRI web metrics can be found online.

For more information, visit: