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Co-principals Shy-Quon Ely II and Brooke Beavers will focus on improving test scores, preventing state intervention and establishing closer ties with families and the community.

Co-principals Shy-Quon Ely II and Brooke Beavers, most recently co-leaders of a local charter, will focus on improving test scores, preventing state intervention and establishing closer ties with families and the community.

More school districts now operate winter- and spring-break academies as a way for students to complete courses, retake classes they’ve failed, get a jump-start on other work and increase their chances of on-time graduation.

Doreen McSain, Glenwood Elementary School, has been named principal of the year by the School Administrators Association of New York.

Principal Doreen McSain of Glenwood Elementary School welcomes canines into her school to encourage her students to read to them.

District leaders have enhanced credit recovery programs and have recommitted to proactive efforts to keep students from falling too far behind.

DA’s Districts of Distinction program, which honors innovative projects in America’s public school districts, will be showcased in a special annual edition of the magazine each July, starting in 2017.

Chronically absent students are more likely to struggle academically and less likely to graduate. (Click to enlarge graphic)

More than 6 million students—representing 13 percent of the K12 population—missed at least 15 days of school in 2013-14. These chronically absent students were more likely to struggle academically and less likely to graduate.

Comprehensive Data Warehouse/Support System

An in-house data warehouse built in 2012 gives educators in Nevada’s large Washoe County School District quick access to the academic information they need to help each student succeed.

With the Business Intelligence Gateway system, or BIG, educators can track any students’ performance and create plans to improve grades. The data, which is updated every night, also allows educators to act more quickly when they spot students who are falling off the path to graduation.

98% Graduation Rate and Still Climbing

In 2013, Alabaster City Schools separated from Shelby County Schools to become its own district with 6,000 students—including 9 percent who need special education services, 1,000 who speak English as a second language, and nearly 40 percent who qualify for free or reduced lunch.

Prior to separation the graduation rate had been near 89 percent, but in the new district, there was a higher percentage of students at risk of not graduating.

Meeting students’ psychological needs, improving STEM programs and fueling college and career access exemplify innovative solutions increasing student achievement nationwide. The 24 school systems honored in this round of District Administration’s Districts of Distinction national recognition program found creative ways to raise graduation rates and to build up administrative effectiveness.

Innovative Grants: Transforming Rent into Innovation in NC Schools

With funding tight, Newton-Conover City Schools launched a program in 2014 to support innovation: Instead of going to the general fund, fees collected when community groups rent district facilities could go to students and staff to develop their own projects. 

Grants between $500 and $1,500 have been awarded to projects that enhance learning and the school environment, ranging from purchasing a 3D printer that was used to fashion a prosthetic hand for a student to buying books for an all-boys book club aimed at underprivileged and at-risk elementary students.

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