KPS officials celebrate solid ranking in recent study

Dennis Mansfield, Contributing Writer

KALKASKA – Officials at Kalkaska High School aren’t crowing too loudly, but the high school and the Kalkaska Public School district as a whole is finding plenty to celebrate about after the recent release of the 2018 Michigan Public School Context and Performance Report Card by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy.

The report was released by the Midland-based nonprofit institute on Jan. 10, with KHS receiving a grade of “B,” with a score of 107.72 and 86.8 percentile ranking.

According to first-year KPS Superintendent Terry Starr, Kalkaska was one of 13 schools within the Traverse Bay Area Intermediate School District to be listed in the report.

But, the good news for Kalkaska was that the high school was the second-highest scoring school in the region.

“We have something to toot our horn about,” Starr said. “If nothing else, it’s a shot in the arm for the teachers. It shows we are producing great learners.”

In the report, the Mackinac Center for Public Policy states that the goal of the report is “to provide another dimension to identifying the relative effectiveness of schools so that parents, educators and school leaders can have a more accurate and well-rounded picture of school performance.”

And, while excited about Kalkaska’s grade and inclusion in the report, Starr said school officials and district residents must also realize it’s “just one data point” of performance by the high school and that the district overall still has room for improvement.

“It’s not the end all be all,” Starr said. “There are so many other things that are used to look at a school district.

“(But) we want to use this as a way to get better,” he added. “That’s exactly how we look at it. Our grade, it’s not bad. But, we want that ‘A.’”

And, KPS officials might already be working on a way to better, not only next year’s grade, but the curriculum at KHS.

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