Highlands School District Ranked #3 in Overachieving Districts

Highlands School District rose to the top in the Overachieving School Districts category in the 2011 Guide to Western PA Schools, the Pittsburgh Business Times annual analysis of the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA) Exam results.

Highlands School District secured the #3 position on the list for local school districts, which ranks districts according to how well students perform compared to the economic status of the community. The #3 rank is an improvement from last year’s #15. The list ranks 104 local public districts.

Highlands moved up to #10 out of 496 state public districts analyzed in the Overachiever Rank. This is an improvement from #46 in last year’s rankings.

Pittsburgh Business Times lists districts in the Honor Roll rank according to PSSA scores. Highlands is #72 out of 104. Highlands is ranked #90 for economic status. The analysis uses those rankings to determine the Overachiever ranking, which answers the question “What school districts do better than expectations based upon economics?”.

The economic situation of a student, or a school district, is one of the strongest predictors of how well a student will perform academically. The Pittsburgh Business Times notes in the publication that a district finishing high on this rank is smashing expectations.

Highlands School District attributes its success to an open-minded philosophy of implementing innovative and effective educational programs and intervening and assisting all students in academic trouble. Students receive individualized attention and are repeatedly assessed for benchmark improvements. Highlands School District also is implementing the Sanctuary Model, which takes into consideration the need for understanding our community’s make-up to better communicate and interact with our students and be more effective teachers.
Click here to see more of Highlands in the Pittsburgh Business Times!
Originally published April 11, 2011