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Saturday, December 5, 2015

Stuart High School regains full state accreditation

The main entrance at Stuart High School.

Following a review by the Virginia Department of Education, JEB Stuart High School has been designated as fully accredited for the 2014-15 school year, Fairfax County Public Schools announced Dec. 4.

Although Stuart students had been improving academically, members of the Stuart community were disheartened to learn in October that the school had missed full accreditation by just one-half of a percentage point and had been designated as “partially accredited: approaching benchmark-graduation and completion index.”

That happened because just eight students had been incorrectly categorized when the graduation rate was calculated, said school board member Sandy Evans. Those students had gotten certificates of completion but still hadn’t fulfilled all the requirements for graduation.

Evans worked with Del. Kaye Kory and Sen. Dick Saslaw to appeal the accreditation decision. Virginia Secretary of Education Anne Holton accepted their request to recalculate the graduation rate.

The graduation rate calculation is complex, and the students at issue had been categorized in a different way, Evans said. They hadn’t dropped out and have now been reclassified as “continuing to complete” as they work toward finishing the requirements for a high school diploma. 

“A whole lot of people were involved in making sure the graduation rate was properly calculated,” she said. “Stuart folks worked hard on this. It was a team effort.”

“We are incredibly proud of the significant academic gains made by Stuart High School students during the past year and appreciate the hard work and dedication of Stuart High School teachers and school leaders,” said Deputy Superintendent Steve Lockard in announcing the school’s change in status. “We also are appreciative of the cooperation and assistance of the Virginia Department of Education in this matter.”  


  1. Yay to Principal Penny Gros and all the incredible teachers at JEB Stuart H.S. Thank you Sandy for your follow-up and not accepting the previous result.

  2. So, they kicked the ball a few inches to barely make a first down and we're supposed to be impressed? I doubt that this will be nearly enough to keep my neighbors from moving outside the Beltway once their kids reach high school age.

    1. If your neighbors are that ignorant and unwilling to understand what is going on at Stuart that they are willing to sell their house without finding out, you may be better off without them. When your smarter neighbors move in, nudge them to get involved in the school - PTSA, boosters, tutoring, etc. Their involvement will make a difference.

  3. I think people who've been watching Stuart are well aware of the considerable resources that FCPS has been putting into Stuart, including the assignment of top administrators to the school, to reverse its decline under Pam Jones and Prosperanta Calhoun. Those efforts are now paying off. Penny Gros is doing a fantastic job there.

  4. "...I couldn't be happier than if they were based on real grades."
    Clueless (1995)