Video: Pontotoc City Schools Get “A” Grade in State Ranking
PONTOTOC, Miss. (WCBI) – Getting good grades takes dedication and lots of time spent hitting the books. Every year school districts across the state are also graded on how well students are performing. Pontotoc City Schools have consistently been ranked as one of the top districts in North Mississippi.
The Mississippi Department of Education evaluates school districts each year based on student performance. For the 2013-2014 school year, Pontotoc City Schools earned an “A” grade in overall achievement. Director of Assessment and Professional Development, Howard Hill, says team work is the key to their success.
“Our teachers collaborate extensively with each other. They collaborate in grades below them, grades above them, to know what students have learned the previous year and what students need to know the following year,” says Howard Hill, Director of Assessment and Professional Development for Pontotoc City Schools.
Christy Suggs is Principal at D. T. Cox Elementary in Pontotoc. She says paying close attention to the needs of students allows them to target challenges students may have in the classroom.
“We try to teach the whole student. We care about the students. The teachers are on board with the students that need interventions, the kids that need enrichment,” says Suggs.
Suggs says the district also believes that students must be present at school for optimal learning. At Cox Elementary, activities and rewards are given to students with the best record of attendance.
“One of the things or activities that they did was the Perfect Attendance selfie. That’s what hanging behind me here in the hallway. They’ve got their names on the walls and they get to go by and they’re picking out their friends. That kind of thing. They’re proud that they were here all week,” says Suggs.
Administrators also credit parents and the entire community for the support given to students. The Pontotoc City School District has five schools, about 2,300 students and nearly 200 teachers on staff.