Marked Tree designated as Silver Medal School

Monday, May 12, 2014

According to U.S. News and World Report, Marked Tree High School ranks 18 in the state of Arkansas as a silver medal school.

Marked Tree High School Principal Matt Wright said that the award places the school in the top 20 of all high schools in the state and in the top 5% of high schools in the nation. The district has received several medals in the past, but this was the third silver medal.

Jim Mayers, Marked Tree High School English teacher, said the one-to-one technology initiative and the project-based learning has really promoted growth in students at the school.

"I think the teachers work hard at Marked Tree schools, and we have a wonderful community," Mayers said. "But this is not a success of the principals or the teachers, its a testament to the students. They work hard, and respond to challenges, diving in and tackling learning. they get excited about it, and it makes the school very rare and special."

Bobby Pharis, Marked Tree High School counselor, agreed it is the students at Marked Tree that make it an award-winning school.

"[The students] are the absolute best. They are working together more than they have ever worked before. They are thinking and reasoning at higher levels in their reading and wirting," Pharis said. "Teachers are putting students in charge of their own learning, in a sense, by placing technology at their fingertips."

Mayers and Pharis are proud to work for the silver medal school. The U.S. News and World Report Best High Schools in Arkansas ranked Marked Tree as 18th, with an Advanced Placement participation rate of 53 percent. The high school also ranked above average on literacy exams, and near average on geometry exams.

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