The St. Johns County School District — once again — is the state’s top performing school district, earning a letter grade of “A” and the greatest number of total points for the 13th consecutive year.
The Florida Department of Education yesterday released school grades for the 2017-18 school year. St. Johns County had 27 “A” schools, up from 25 last year. The number of “B” schools remained the same at seven. Five schools received grades of “C” and one —Osceola Elementary School — received a “D,” down two grades from a “B” last year.
The district’s graduation rate was 91 percent.
In an interview with The Record Thursday, Superintendent of Schools Tim Forson said, “I’m so impressed with the work of our school leaders and appreciate their commitment to the children and to see that in their performance.”
Forson added that the ratings also allowed schools to identify areas where they might need additional resources or support, including Osceola as well as The Webster School and South Woods Elementary School, both of which dropped from a “B” last year to a “C” this year.
Forson said that while it is useful to look at an annual snapshot of where a school is, a rating has to be considered in the larger context of growth over several years. Every school in the district, he said, puts together an action plan for improvement each year.
The criteria the DOE considers in its annual grading evaluations includes student achievement and learning gains; standardized assessments; graduates rates; and students participation in advanced-level offerings, such as Advanced Placement and dual enrollment courses.
Real estate agents often use school grades to sell homes — just one of the reasons St. Johns County and its schools have seen such an explosion in population growth over the last decade.
Michelle Dillon, president of the St. Johns Education Association, said, “I’m not a big fan of the school grade system, as it’s just one measurement we have of performance. But I am proud of our teachers, students and all our support staff for their hard work in getting us to this position.”
Across the state, the percentage of schools earning an “A” or “B” increased to 58 percent, up one point from last year. High schools saw the largest increased in the percentage of schools improving their grade, with 26 percent moving up one or more letter grade. In addition, 68 percent of schools that earned a “D” or “F” grade in2016-17 improved by at least one letter grade in 2017-18.
Schools in Duval and Flagler counties maintained their overall “B” rating of last year, each respectively with a graduation rate of 81 percent.
SCHOOL:2018 GRADE (2017 GRADE)
St. Augustine Public Montessori School: B (C)
Crookshank Elementary School: C (C)
St. Johns Technical High School: C (N/A)
Ketterlinus Elementary School: A (C)
R.B.Hunt Elementary School: A (A)
RJ Murray Middle School: B (B)
St. Augustine High School: B (B)
The Webster School: C (B)
First Coast Technical College: C (N/A)
Julington Creek Elementary School: A (A)
Allen D. Nease Senior High School: A (A)
W. Douglas Hartley Elementary: A (A)
Sebastian Middle School: B (C)
Alice B. Landrum Middle School: A (A)
Switzerland Point Middle School: A (A)
Osceola Elementary School: D (B)
Mill Creek Elementary School: A (A)
Ponte Vedra Palm Valley-Rawlings Elementary School: A (A)
Otis A. Mason Elementary School: B (B)
Gamble Rogers Middle School: B (B)
Cunningham Creek Elementary School: A (A)
Ocean Palms Elementary School: A (A)
Pedro Menendez High School: B (C)
Bartram Trail High School: A (A)
Durbin Creek Elementary School: A (A)
Timberlin Creek Elementary School: A (A)
South Woods Elementary School: C (B)
Patriot Oaks Academy: A (A)
Liberty Pines Academy: A (A)
Pacetti Bay Middle School: A (A)
Wards Creek Elementary School: A (A)
Fruit Cove Middle School: A (A)
Ponte Vedra High School: A (A)
Creekside High School: A (A)
Hickory Creek Elementary School: A (A)
Valley Ridge Academy: A (A)
Palencia Elementary School: A (A)
Picolata Crossing Elementary School: A (N/A)
St. Johns Virtual Franchise: A (A)
St. Johns Virtual Instructional Program: A (A)
Find the full report at www.fldoe.org.