Tribune-Courier News Reporter
Sirens blared across Marshall County Friday morning as fire departments and police officers visited several elementary schools to help the teachers welcome their students to school.
Marshall County School District students have surpassed their academic accomplishments this year like never before resulting in a grand-welcoming ceremony for the students at several county schools.
The latest results from Next Generation Accountability System, a state testing analysis, show the Marshall County School Districts rank No. 5 out of 174 school districts in the state of Kentucky.
Marshall County students performed at the 98th percentile, meaning they performed better than 98 percent of school districts throughout the state.
Marshall County is also the only county district in the top 10 performing districts – all others earning the top 10 distinctions are independent school districts.
Superintendent Trent Lovett said it was the work of the teachers and staff, but above all the students, which made the rankings possible.
The district gains reflect an increase at the school level, showing improvement at every school within the district.
The NGES consists of measures other than that of achievement, including growth and gap points.
Achievement scores consist of how many answers students get right or wrong on the state exam and a score of distinguished, proficient, apprentice and novice is given as a grade.
Growth points are determined by comparing two years of a student’s scale score on the exam – if a student increases their scale by a percentage that is considered typical growth then schools will receive a growth point.
Gap points are derived from students who fall in a gap group – Black, Hispanic, Native American, with disability, free/reduced meals or limited English proficiency. Schools gain points in the gap category for each student in the group that performs at proficiency.
All levels of school – elementary, middle and high school – use the three-component system, but the middle and high school also have college and career readiness components – achieved when students meet state benchmark scores.
The high school also has a graduation rate component, which is determined by the percentage of students who graduate.
While the Marshall County School District is often commended for its athletic prowess, Lovett said the academic success of the students is what makes faculty, staff and administrators proud.
Lovett said there isn’t one factor that’s responsible for the success of the Marshall County students, but the success is because of many factors.
“We must prepare our students to compete in a global society and continually work to provide them with 21st century skills that will be crucial to their success,” he said. “Although we will not rest on our laurels, we will take time to celebrate our students’ accomplishments and efforts. It is a great day to be a Marshall County Marshal.”