Davis Elementary School in Jackson
Davis Elementary School in Jackson

The school ranking site SchoolDigger.com ranked Jackson’s Davis Magnet International Baccalaureate Elementary School as first among 403 elementary schools in the state based on last year’s test scores.

Davis has previously been named a National Blue Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education and consistently receives an A rating from the Mississippi Department of Education.

“While Davis Magnet IB traditionally holds a ranking in the top ten, it is very difficult to maintain the rankings,” said Principal Kathleen Grigsby. “The entire faculty, student body, parents and community members made concerted efforts to give their best not only throughout the school year, but also during each of the assessments.”

Students at Davis are exposed to Spanish and sign language instruction and participate in Accelerated Reader. The school also works with the University of Mississippi to provide science-based instruction to all grades.

According to SchoolDigger.com, Davis is 94 percent African-American and 3.5 percent white. Almost 65 percent of its students are in the free and reduced lunch program.

Jackson Public School District is the second largest district in the state. It is rated a D, and recently had its accreditation status downgraded to “probation” after an audit by the state education department found safety and other issues at the schools.

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Kate Royals is a Jackson native and returned to Mississippi Today as the lead education reporter after serving in the same capacity from 2016 to 2018. Prior to that, she was a reporter for the Clarion-Ledger covering education and state government. She won awards for her investigative work, including stories about the state’s campaign finance laws and prison system. She was a news producer at MassLive in Springfield, Mass., after graduating from Louisiana State University’s Manship School of Mass Communications with a master’s degree in communications.