By Tanya Arja
Hillsborough County Public Schools students remain in the top tier among their peers across the country as Hillsborough is named one of the best urban school districts in America for the second time in a row.
Up against 27 large school districts stretching from Boston to San Diego, Hillsborough Schools’ fourth and eighth grade students tied for first place in reading and tied for second place in math.
The testing is part of a national effort known as ‘The Nation’s Report Card,’ which rates performance by fourth and eighth grade students from similar backgrounds, using the same tests, to create an apples-to-apples comparison. The National Center for Education Statistics recently announced the results. Hillsborough also achieved similar results in the last large district study by ‘The Nation’s Report Card’ in 2017.
Tampa Bay’s business leaders are able to use Hillsborough’s first-class nationwide rankings to recruit businesses to locate and grow in our area. Some of the school districts ranked in the same top tier as Hillsborough are cities that often compete directly with Tampa Bay for jobs: Charlotte, Austin, San Diego and Miami.
“We are proud to have a community partner like Hillsborough County Public Schools. They are actively putting Hillsborough County, Tampa and all of Tampa Bay on the map to compete with other top-tier large school districts and making our region a destination that attracts workforce talent,” said Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Bob Rohrlack. “They are also working to give our students the skills and training they need to make them competitive here in the Tampa Bay business community following their formal education.”
Hillsborough Schools is a state and national leader in preparing students for the workforce. A district record of more than 7,000 students earned valuable industry certifications last year in fields ranging from information technology to welding.
“These results show how much our schools are connected to our community,” said Superintendent Jeff Eakins. “When our students, teachers and staff succeed in the classroom, it generates an economic benefit through new jobs and new opportunities. And when our community gets behind us like Hillsborough County has over the past several years, we’re able to make even more of a positive impact. It’s a win-win for everyone.”