The state noted that five Johnson City schools earned the state’s highest distinction as Reward Schools. Those schools were Cherokee Elementary, Lake Ridge Elementary, Woodland Elementary, South Side Elementary and Towne Acres Elementary schools. This was the second consecutive year that Cherokee, Lake Ridge and Woodland earned the designation and the sixth consecutive year for Towne Acres.
“The faculty, students and families of these five schools worked tirelessly to earn this honor, and they should be proud of their achievement,” Superintendent Steve Barnett said.
Barnett said the district still wants to work to better assist students learning English as a second language and socioeconomically disadvantaged students but was proud to see Science Hill High School make the top 10 in English language arts and math.
“For our high school to be in the top 10 in math and ELA is something remarkable to be proud of,” he said, also citing ACT score improvements.
“We had some schools that were very close to becoming reward schools, as well,” he later continued. “We’re hoping to see even better results next year.”
Washington County Schools was also designated as an “advancing” district based on the data. According to Director Bill Flanary, University School, Gray Elementary, Sulphur Springs Elementary, Jonesborough Middle School and West View Elementary schools were all designated as Reward Schools.
“We’re particularly proud of West View, as they were on the state’s targeted assist list last year. They’ve done an extraordinary amount of work in this turnaround,” Flanary wrote in a statement to the Press. “We’re very pleased that Washington County has been designated as an Advancing School System in every category, having been ‘in need of improvement’ last year.”
Flanary said the district has been making strides in other areas, as well, including a 2019 graduation rate of 94.54%.
“That’s the highest in at least 10 years, and almost certainly an all-time record for Washington County Schools,” he said.
Washington County elementary school results showed an increase in the number of students scoring “on track” and “mastered” in ELA and math in grades 3-8. The district also reported “significant, sustained improvement in 3rd grade ELA,” but hopes to increase the number of students scoring “on track” and “mastered” among students with disabilities and economically-disadvantaged students.
The statewide results indicated improvement in mathematics elsewhere, too.
”I’m impressed with the improvement we’ve seen in mathematics,” Education Commissioner Penny Schwinn said.
Other districts in Northeast Tennessee also saw improvement in math and English. Rogersville City Schools improved third-grade English language arts by 17% over 2018, and three districts saw math scores increase for students in grades 3-8, including Carter County, Hamblen County and Johnson County.
Carter and Johnson counties were also both listed as “advancing” districts along with Greene County, Greenville, Elizabethton, Bristol, Kingsport, Sullivan County and Unicoi County.
For more information on the report, visit www.tn.gov/education.