Weir, Oak Glen among state’s tops in graduation rates

GRADUATION RATE RECOGNITION — Oak Glen High School and Weir High School were recognized during Monday’s Hancock County Board of Education meeting for reaching a graduation rate of 90 percent or higher for the 2015-2016 school year. The schools were among 70 in the state to be recognized during a ceremony held Feb. 10. With the honors are, from left, Oak Glen High School Principal Dave Smith, Weir High Principal Kristin Bissett, Superintendent Kathy Kidder-Wilkerson and former Weir High Principal Dan Enich. -- Steve Rappach

NEW CUMBERLAND — Hancock County’s public high schools received state recognition for high graduation figures and were honored during Monday’s board of education meeting.

Oak Glen High School and Weir High School were recognized during a ceremony Feb. 10 in Charleston for achieving at least a 90 percent or higher graduation rate for the 2015-2016 school year. Oak Glen — with a rate of 92.17 percent — and Weir — at 90.48 percent — were among 70 schools throughout the state that received the distinction.

Superintendent Kathy Kidder-Wilkerson remarked on the success of the high schools achieving the honor, and noted one of state Superintendent Michael Martirano’s goals for success amongst the high schools throughout the state.

“It has been one of the goals of Dr. Martirano to increase the graduation rate in West Virginia, and I would like to say that out of the…70 that were honored, we (Hancock County Schools) had two,” Wilkerson said.

In attendance to accept the plaques and certificates of appreciation were Oak Glen High Principal Dave Smith, former Weir High Principal Dan Enich and current Weir High Principal Kristin Bissett.

“I would just like to say it was definitely a group effort,” Bissett said.

“If it weren’t for the hard work of everybody in the high school, the students, the teachers, the parents, the secretaries, we wouldn’t be able to achieve this.”

“It’s good to meet these state superintendents,” Enich said.

“Thankfully, I was able to work with Kristin and Danny, and they have been able to help me tremendously with that, so we are very appreciative of the recognition and hope to continue it,” Smith said.

Board member Michelle Chappell also commented on the recognition, noting that during a recent Regional Education Service Agencies 6 meeting there had been mention of at least one high school receiving the distinction from the state.

“It was actually mentioned at our RESA-6 meeting that at least one high school in all of RESA-6 did receive the percentage, but I don’t know that all six counties had both high schools, so again congratulations to our entire county reaching those graduation rates,” Chappell said.

This marks the second consecutive year in which Weir High received such a distinction as it was honored last year after reporting a graduation rate of 90.07 percent.

The 2015-2016 school year also marked an increase in the number of schools in the state that received a 90 percent or higher graduation rate. Last year, 47 high schools out of 116 in the state reported a graduation rate of 90 percent or higher.

(Rappach can be contacted at srappach@reviewonline.com)

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