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      Kirksville High School students scoring high on national tests

      Kirksville High School students are showing signs of improvement on national tests.

      At Wednesday evening's Kirksville School Board meeting, Kirksville High School Principal Randy Mikel announced that the school has seen the best test scores in years, with scores on last school year's ACT college entrance exam and the Advanced Placement, or AP, college credit tests going above the statewide and national averages.

      Four students from Kirksville Senior High were also semi-finalists in the National Merit Scholarship Program.

      This all, of course, is great news for the school district.

      "It certainly validates what we do every day," said Mikel. "I know what goes on in the building. We have great teachers and motivated students. It's a rigorous curriculum, but when we get the reports and compared it statewide and nationally, it makes me feel really proud to work there to work with wonderful teachers and have great students. It's a win-win."

      Even with the much-improved scores, during the presentation of the Annual Performance Report, it was announced that the Kirksville School District's graduation rate remains at the state average of 86 percent.

      School administrators told us they are not satisfied with that figure, and they want to work to improve at-risk programs to keep so many students from dropping out of school.