Mon County schools recognized in “America’s Best High Schools” edition

MORGANTOWN — Monongalia County’s three public high schools were prominently noted in U.S. News and World Report’s recent “America’s Best High Schools” edition for 2018.

How prominent? Try Nos. 1, 3 and 13 in the West Virginia section.

For the second year running, the publication named Morgantown High the No. 1 high school in the Mountain State.

University High clocked in at No. 3.

And Clay-Battelle was ranked No. 13.

The annual edition came out May 9.

Monongalia’s Board of Education (BOE) recognized the trio of schools during its regular meeting Tuesday night.

Principal Paul Mihalko said he was heartened and thrilled by Morgantown High’s top ranking — the second year in a row, in fact, for the school on Wilson Avenue.

“This is a testament to all the good things going on at Morgantown, with our teachers and our students,” he told the board.

Mihalko’s counterpart at Clay-Battelle, David Cottrell, said he appreciated the national and state recognition for a school intertwined with the Blacksville community, in Monongalia County’s outlying western end.

“It just shows the quality of our students and our teachers,” said Cottrell, who is also a Clay-Battelle graduate who jumped at the chance to return to his alma mater after his teaching career took him out of the area for a time.

No representatives from University High School were present at the meeting.

The magazine ranked more than 20,000 schools nationwide, with a big benchmark being how well the students who attended there are prepared for college-level coursework.

County residents who annually support excess levies at the polls that help pay for the educational effort should also be recognized, BOE member Nancy Walker said.

“We always have to thank our community for the support it gives us,” she said.

Recent Morgantown High graduate Vinitha Joseph was also lauded for her achievement this last school year: She was named a U.S. Presidential Scholar.

Meanwhile, Bridgeport High, in neighboring Harrison County, was ranked No. 2 in the state by U.S. News and World Report.

In Marion County, Fairmont Senior High and East Fairmont High were listed at No. 9 and No. 10, respectively.

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