Champion Owens Saylor
KET honors Owens Saylor, superintendent of Daviess County Schools, “for his vital community service, commitment to education and support of students and their families.” Amy Grant, KET west region education consultant, presented the American Graduate Champion award to Supt. Saylor during a meeting of the DCPS Board of Education on May 19, 2016.
Saylor, who was named Superintendent of the Daviess County Public Schools district in 2012, was nominated for the success of his "Great Expectations" initiative. According to his nomination, this initiative set the stage in 2013 for the assignment of College/Career Coaches at high schools to advise and support students as they work to meet CCR goals. “Great Expectations” has worked seamlessly with the Advance Kentucky program, providing extensive supports in encouraging students to take AP-level courses. Participation in Advanced Placement and dual-credit courses has increased dramatically. In 2010, 128 students took 152 AP Exams. In 2014, that number rocketed to 520 students taking 805 AP Exams. “These are more than just numbers. These are students for whom the trajectory of their lives has been forever changed because of a realization that someone has ‘Great Expectations’ for their success.”
DCPS has now earned its third consecutive designation as a Distinguished district with 10 of 17 schools honored as Distinguished – the highest level of recognition – and three rewarded as Schools of Distinction, placing them among the top 5 percent of all public schools in Kentucky. Apollo and Daviess County High Schools have made significant, sustained improvements over the past four years. Starting from the 37th state testing percentile in 2012, AHS has leaped to the 90th percentile in 2015. DCHS has progressed from the 52nd percentile in 2012 to the 91st in 2015. Both schools have moved from “needs improvement” to “distinguished” status. ACT results for the graduating class of 2015 represent the highest composite scores since the system to assess every graduating senior was implemented in 2004. Extensive supports help high school students meet ACT and College-Career Readiness benchmarks. District personnel are especially excited about results from the alternative high school. In 2013, only one alternative high school student met state CCR benchmarks. “In 2014, that number increased to an incredible 18 students!”