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July 8, 2016
Thirty-eight schools in Polk County achieved either A or B grades, according to data released Friday by the Florida Department of Education.
The Polk County School District maintained an overall C grade with 19 “A” schools, 19 “B” schools, 50 “C” schools, and 28 “D” schools.
The number of F schools decreased to 6 from 7 compared to the previous year. One school, Eastside Elementary, improved significantly from an F to a C.
“This was expected to be a challenging year for Florida’s schools,” said Superintendent Jacqueline M. Byrd. “Understanding that, we are encouraged by the school grades data released today. Our schools continue to show improvement, and many have maintained their high levels of academic excellence.”
The state has increased education standards and implemented a more rigorous grading system. Ultimately, it is now more difficult for school districts to reflect progress from their students’ learning gains.
“We are proud of the hard work and perseverance demonstrated by the teachers and students of Polk County Public Schools,” Byrd said. “We celebrate their accomplishments while remaining focused on our opportunities for more improvement. A new school year is fast approaching, and we will be ready.”
More than 3,000 students are taking part in summer learning programs, providing innovative, hands-on lessons in reading, mathematics and science. The school district has a comprehensive literacy series in all elementary schools, and a district-wide campaign supporting literacy.
District staff will continue reviewing the FDOE data to develop strategies for targeting schools that need further resources and attention.The 2015-2016 Grade Report provides a breakdown by school along with comparisons to the previous year.