Region 8 Schools Honored for Success in School

JONESBORO, AR -- We hear a lot about the incredible amount of pressure being put on our kids everyday inside the classroom to excel, and now, there's more evidence that is paying off.

Two Region 8 schools are being honored as being among the best practices schools in Arkansas:  Westside Middle School and the Nettleton Intermediate Center.

An official presentation will be held on Friday in Little Rock.  On Thursday Region 8 News sat down with people from one of the schools, Westside Middle School, to tell us what sets their school apart.

Kids and teachers at Westside Middle School work hard every day and now that work is being recognized.  Nicole Manley is a teacher at Westside Middle School and has a daughter in the same building.

"The expectations that they have here are extremely high and they strive everyday to make sure they meet those expectations," said Manley.

"Westside has been designated as a best practices school for the last few years which basically means they are high performers.  Superintendent Dr. James Best said the success is tied to the teachers and to the students.

"For the Westside employees here it's more than just a job to them.  They really do care about the school district and that's the biggest factor of all," said Best.

Westside students have done very well over the last several years, which is a testament to a school that has had dark days to get past.

"I think the best thing, really from my chair as an outsider who moved here four years ago, this is a positive thing particularly for the school to move forward," said Best.

And that is what Best said these kids and teachers need.

"Hopefully people will remember us in that vein rather than the unfortunate incident where we were a victim of.  The people that live and work in this school and this community, they deserve more than that," said Best.

Best said they've tried very hard to get people to think of the school for some other reason, and this accomplishment is a positive for Westside and what they stand for.