The School District of Manatee County held on to its B grade in the 2017-2018 school year.
On Wednesday afternoon, the Florida Department of Education released grades for schools within the state's 67 districts, as well as overall grades for each of the districts. Of the 60 Manatee schools listed, 15 received A's, 18 received B's, 20 received C's and six got a D. Manatee Virtual School received an "I," or an "incomplete" mark.
There were no F-rated schools in the district.
“I’m very proud of our students, teachers, faculty and administrators for their accomplishments,” said Deputy Superintendent, Cynthia Saunders.
“This is a win for the entire community. It takes all of us working together to improve the lives and education of our children. Although we’re excited that we no longer have any 'D' secondary schools and we’ve improved our ranking from 39th in the state to 33rd, we know that we still have work to do. We are working hard towards earning an 'A' for our district.”
Most schools maintained their grade, while about five went down and approximately 15 went up.
Several Manatee schools went up two levels on the scale: Myakka City Elementary and Visible Men Academy went from a C to an A, and W.D. Sugg Middle School went from a D to a C.
Palma Sola Elementary dropped by two levels on the scale, from an A to a C.
After fighting to keep its doors open, Manatee Charter School achieved a C grade — an increase from the D grade it earned for three years in a row. Principal Bonnie Brett, who joined the school last year, has said a higher grade was one of her top priorities.
“After examining the grades, I’m proud to be leaving the district on a high note. I look forward to watching the district work together to continue on the right path towards its ultimate goal of becoming an 'A' district,” said Superintendent Dr. Diana Greene.
The DOE calculates school grades annually based on up to 11 components, including student achievement and learning gains on statewide, standardized assessments and high school graduation rate.
According to the department, the state now has more than 1,027 "A" schools — up from 987 in 2017 and 763 in 2016.
“The school grades announced today are the result of hard work by our students, parents, teachers and leaders," Commissioner of Education Pam Stewart said in a release. "I am extremely proud that Florida’s accountability system continues to ensure all students have access to the high-quality education they deserve and that it prepares them for college, a career and life."