For the third time in three years, Goessel High School has been recognized as a bronze medalist in U.S. News and World Report’s annual “Best High Schools” report, using data from the 2009-10 school year.
To qualify for a bronze medal, a school must perform better than statistically expected on reading and math assessments, factoring in the portion of economically disadvantaged students. A school’s disadvantaged — African-American, Hispanic, and poor — students must also perform better than the statewide average for students in those categories.
About 29 percent of schools analyzed nationwide received a bronze medal or higher. To qualify for silver or gold designation, U.S. News and World Report measured students’ college-readiness using Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate programs for metrics.
Because GHS doesn’t use either of those programs, the school didn’t qualify for silver or gold. That doesn’t mean the school doesn’t prepare students for college, though. Counselor Janna Duerksen said the school offers all of the Kansas Board of Regents curriculum locally and encourages students to take the ACT college assessment multiple times.
The school also offers several courses that provide college and high school credit, such as college algebra, calculus, and public speaking. Other college courses can be taken online for dual credit, Duerksen said.
“The sky is the limit,” she said.
USD 411 Superintendent John Fast said everyone in the district deserves a share of the honor. Teachers, students, parents, and the school board all contribute to the atmosphere that made the recognition possible.
“It shows we’re pointed in the right direction for student achievement,” Fast said.