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The Illinois State Board of Education recently released the 2018 Illinois School Report Cards.

This year’s version implements a new process for rating school performance across the state.

In the past, school ratings were based on whether students met or failed to meet a designated benchmark on standardized testing.

This year, the process relied on a variety of student variables, which weighs heavily on how student performance on standardized testing improves from year to year.

This change in the state’s school rating system was instituted as a way to give low-performing schools credit if they can show their students are improving in a meaningful way.

Under this new designation system, schools in Illinois fall into one of four categories: Exemplary, Commendable, Underperforming and Lowest Performing.

To achieve the Exemplary designation, schools must fall within the top 10% of schools statewide.

Also, to be considered Exemplary, none of a school’s subgroups, including those with special needs, racial and ethnic groups, or students from low-income families can be under-performing.

This year in Illinois, only 67 high schools, 47 middle schools and 257 elementary schools made the top 10 percent and thus earned the Exemplary rating.

Coal City School District #1 is very proud to report that the following schools all achieved the highest state ranking of Exemplary.

Coal City Early Childhood Center

Coal City Elementary School

Coal City Intermediate School

Coal City Middle School

There are 15 Elementary Schools in Grundy County and 4 attained Exemplary Status, and all four are from Coal City School District #1.

There are four Middle Schools in Grundy County and Coal City Middle School was the only one to achieve Exemplary status. In fact, in all of DuPage County, only three Middle Schools achieved this honor.

Coal City High School earned the Commendable ranking, which means the school had no underperforming student demographic groups but did not meet the cap for the top 10 percent of schools statewide.

There were no high schools in Grundy County to achieve the State’s Exemplary ranking.

District #1 Superintendent Dr. Kent Bugg stated, “These state rankings are a testament to the vision of our Board of Education and the hard work and dedication of our faculty, staff, administration, and of course, our amazing students. Our school district has long been dedicated towards the goal of continuous improvement, and this recognition for our schools shows that our commitment is paying off in the educational opportunities we offer our students. These rankings also show the support and commitment our community shows to our school system. I could not be more proud of our District #1 school community.”