Polk State College’s three charter high schools are celebrating A grades and high ratings for the 2018-2019 school year.
For the fifth consecutive year, Polk State Lakeland Collegiate High School and Polk State Chain of Lakes Collegiate High School achieved A’s, according to grades the Florida Department of Education released Thursday.
Polk State Lakeland Gateway to College Collegiate High School, which receives a school improvement rating instead of a school grade due to differences in its mission, received for the third year in a row a “commendable” school improvement rating.
“Once again, we are very proud of the work of our students as well as our faculty and staff. To earn a commendable rating from the state for the third year in a row is no small feat,” Polk State Lakeland Gateway to College Collegiate Principal Corey Barnes said. “We are very happy with our success and look forward to being able to continue to provide our students with every chance possible to be successful while meeting the diverse needs of our population.”
The principals of Polk State Lakeland Collegiate and Polk State Chain of Lakes Collegiate echoed similar sentiments.
“We work hard every year to achieve excellence and are so happy to be recognized as an A school again this year in the state of Florida. Our students, faculty, and staff are highly dedicated to the success of our school and it shows in our performance,” Polk State Lakeland Collegiate Principal Rick Jeffries said. “As always, it’s a humbling but proud moment for all of us when our hard work is rewarded.”
Polk State Lakeland Collegiate and Polk State Chain of Lakes Collegiate also were designated as Schools of Excellence by the State Board of Education for the second consecutive year in 2018-2019. They also rank No.1 out of 448 public high schools in Florida for four-year graduation rates, graduating 100 percent of seniors on time for six consecutive years.
Polk State’s three charter high schools allow students to simultaneously complete requirements for their high school diplomas while earning college credits. In many cases, students graduate with both their high school diplomas and Associate in Arts degrees.
Polk State’s collegiate high schools serve only juniors and seniors, and this specialization formerly made them ineligible for school grades, as these ratings were largely based on the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test administered to sophomores.
Both Polk State Lakeland Collegiate and Polk State Chain of Lakes Collegiate became eligible to receive school grades five years ago after the state adopted the Florida Standards Assessments for K-12 students.
Since then, the schools have received A’s every year.
“We are very proud of the accomplishments of our students,” Polk State Chain of Lakes Principal Keith Bonney said. “Along with faculty and staff, we will continue to achieve excellence.”