Trenton High School Receives National Breakthrough Schools Award

Fri 05/17/13 - 10:09

Trenton High School has been recognized for its work to improve student achievement by the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP).

The high school is one of 10 schools nationwide to receive a MetLife Foundation-NASSP Breakthrough Schools award for 2013.

The award recognizes middle schools and high schools that serve large numbers of low-income students and are high achieving or are dramatically improving student achievement.

"I applaud the dedication Trenton High School has shown to overcome challenges and help students achieve at high levels," said Missouri Commissioner of Education Chris L. Nicastro. "The staff's student-centered approach, coupled with strong support from the community, has resulted in significant progress at the school."

During the past decade, the economic downturn took a toll on the town of Trenton and its 400-student high school, located in rural north-central Missouri.  At one point, nearly 60 percent of the students at the school were eligible for free and reduced-price meals.

The school implemented a number of changes to improve its curriculum, provide additional instruction and prevent students from dropping out of school. School leaders created a strong collaboration with numerous community partners, and the Trenton community supported a bond issue to improve school facilities and a tax extension to increase instructional resources. Those efforts have contributed to a dramatic increase in high school graduation rates and proficiency rates on state assessment testing.

The recipients of the Breakthrough Schools award received a $5,000 grant and are featured in NASSP's monthly magazine, "Principal Leadership."

For more information about the 2013 Breakthrough Schools, visit