ABC School has rebounded from last year’s C grade to once again earn an A, the grade it has held for seven of the last 10 years.

By amassing a total of 578 points out of nine categories, the ABC School secured a 64 percent school grade for its kindergarten through eighth grade classes, 2 percentage points better than the 62 minimum need to earn an A.

The Franklin County School amassed 466 points out of the 11 categories used to judge kindergarten through 12th grade schools. By averaging 42 percent, the school remained a C school, the grade which it has held seven of the last 10 years.

With a particularly strong performance for its middle school end-of-course exams in science, civics, and Algebra 1, and for industry certifications earned, the ABC School outdid last year’s showing in each of the nine categories. These include points for students showing proficiency by scoring level 3, 4, or 5 on the Florida Standards Assessment test in reading and math, as well as for those who show appropriate learning gains in those subjects. The state also looks at the lower 25 percent of students in reading and math and provides points for those students who showed learning gains.

“This year we earned more points in all areas especially with our lower 25 percent math students and our Civics end-of-course pass rate,” said Principal Chimene Johnson. “I am extremely proud of the teachers and staff for their hard work and determination to help every child succeed.

“I am honored to lead such a dedicated team committed to excellence. Our teachers, assistants and interventionists provided direct instruction and inventions in order to help students master grade level standards and make learning gains,” she said, noting that a reading and math interventionist this year was able to assist teachers with providing appropriate remediation based on the needs of their students.

Computer software was used to monitor student progress during the year, Johnson said.

“Teachers along with their classroom assistants analyzed student data to make adjustments to their instruction to improve student mastery of standards,” she said. “Our students worked diligently during school and after school tutoring to improve their skills over time.”

In large part due to the reputation the school has established over the 18 years since its inception, originally as just an elementary school. the ABC School is now full to the class size capacity, as required by state law and the rules of its charter with the Franklin County School district.

Johnson said waiting lists exists in grades kindergarten through sixth, with openings in the seventh and eighth grades.

“There is always room for improvement every year,” Johnson said. “Many of our teachers have already reviewed their data to determine what percent of their students made adequate learning gains. As educators, they challenge themselves to improve upon prior year proficiency scores.

“As students return in August, classroom teachers will review scores with their students and challenge them through encouragement and good instruction to exceed what they accomplished the year before,” she said.

While it may once have been thought of as being populated by a predominantly white, affluent students body, the data showed that the percent of minority students at ABC, just over 29 percent, was greater than the Franklin County School’s 22 percent.

In addition, as a Title I school, ABC had 93 percent of its students deemed to be economically disadvantaged, while at Franklin County the number was 100 percent.

“We serve a population of students with varying abilities, and it is mission of our teachers and our school to help each child reach their full potential,” said Johnson. “ This year's growth and improvement is a challenge to us to maintain or exceed expectations next year.

At Franklin County, the data showed a slippage from the prior year's numbers in all but categories – social studies achievement, middle school acceleration and graduation rate.

After 2016 established Franklin County as one of the state’s lowest for high school graduations, at just 51 percent, the high school rebounded this past year to post a 74 percent graduation rate. In addition, the school jumped from 35 to 55 percent for middle school acceleration success, and from 33 to 38 percent for college and career acceleration.