All eleven New Tampa public schools repeated their Florida Department of Education letter grades from the end of the 2021-22 school year to the end of the 2022-23 school year. Several New Tampa elementary schools have had “A” grades for many years in a row. 

With the 2023-24 school year roughly half over, the Florida Department of Education recently released its letter grades for every school in Florida, including the six elementary, two middle, two high and one “combination” school (Turner-Bartels K-8) in New Tampa for the 2022-23 school year. 

All eleven public schools in our area repeated their letter grades from the previous school year, with all six elementary schools in our area — Chiles, Clark, Heritage, Hunter’s Green, Pride and Tampa Palms — all receiving “A” grades. Benito Middle School also received an A again, while Liberty Middle School and Turner-Bartels (which receives its grades for both its elementary and middle schools) earning Bs. Freedom and Wharton High again received C grades. 

A Tradition Of Excellence 

New Tampa’s schools, which again outperformed the Hillsborough School District as a whole, continued their long-standing tradition of excellent grades, as both Clark and Pride elementaries have received A grades from the state for 21 consecutive years, while Chiles earned its 20th A in a row 

Meanwhile, Benito has received an A grade for 20 of the last 21 years, but that includes one year when middle schools did not receive letter grades. Tampa Palms has earned an A for six consecutive years, while Liberty has received three straight Bs after earning As the 18 years before that. 

Turner-Bartels has earned a B for six consecutive years, after nine straight As in the years before that. 

And, while both Wharton and Freedom have each received seven straight Cs, both earned either As or Bs the previous six years. 

Both Heritage and Hunter’s Green elementaries have had more of a mixed bag prior to their two consecutive As, with both schools receiving either Bs or Cs for either eight (Heritage) or nine (HGE) years since their last As. 

New Tampa’s elementary schools definitely outperformed the Hillsborough School District as a whole, which had only 35 A schools among its 144 elementaries. And, Benito’s A was one of only 12 As earned by the District’s 45 middle schools. 

Overall, the District’s 267 total elementary, middle, high and combined public schools earned a total of 96 A grades, or about 36% earning that highest possible grade. But, New Tampa’s seven As among its 11 total District schools meant that 63.6% earned that most-coveted letter grade. Congrats! 

Tkachik Named A Finalist! 

Because of when the finalists were announced (during the Christmas break), we were unable to interview Suzy Tkacik, a media specialist at Pride Elementary, who was named one of the four finalists for the Hillsborough School District’s Ida S. Baker Diversity Award. The winner will be announced on February 1 at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Tampa, along with the District’s Teacher of the Year and Instructional Support Employee of the Year. 

No other finalists were from New Tampa’s schools. Good luck, Suzy! 

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