Schools recognized for grad rates

PARSONS — The West Virginia Board of Education has recognized schools across the state for their exemplary graduation rates.

According to the West Virginia Department of Education, 68 schools were honored for reaching at least a 90 percent graduation rate, representing 58.6 percent of the 116 total high schools in West Virginia — making the overall graduation rate in the state 89.40 percent for the previous school year.

Tucker County High School was among those schools that reached the graduation rate.

Tucker County Superintendent Dr. Eddie Campbell Jr. said he is “really proud” of the high school’s achievement for the second consecutive year.

“Our rate was above 96 percent, so we are really, really proud,” Campbell said. “I can’t say enough about the work they do at the high school related to getting our kids ready to enter the workforce or moving onto post-secondary education. An award like this and recognition like this is a great opportunity to be able to acknowledge the work that the teachers and administrators in the building do for our kids.”

TCHS Principal Steve Cosner said he and his staff make every effort to reach out to students who may need an extra push.

“The ‘Grad 2020’ program is one that we use to identify students that may be at risk of not graduating, and we make as much of an effort as possible to make personal contact with and help these kids,” Cosner said.

Three schools in Randolph County also were recognized for achieving graduation rates of 90 percent or more for the 2016-17 school year. These schools include Tygarts Valley High School, Elkins High School and Pickens School.

TVHS Principal Steve Wamsley said he is proud of the effort from students, staff and the community for reaching this goal for the second consecutive year.

“It’s an effort that the staff and community is involved in,” Wamsley said. “We work really hard to keep our kids in school, and we run credit recovery in the summer and during the second semester of the school year. We try to instill a sense of pride in the accomplishment — graduating is a big deal for our students.”

In addition, three schools in the state were acknowledged for having a 100 percent graduation rate. Pickens School in Randolph County was among these three exemplary schools.

Philip Barbour High School, Petersburg High School, East Hardy High School, Moorefield High School, Pendleton County Middle-High School and Upshur County High School all also achieved at least a 90 percent graduation rate for the 2016-17 school year.