Four Wiregrass schools systems received an A grade on report cards released Friday by the state Department of Education, and all four schools improved their scores from the previous grading period.

Annually, Alabama public schools and systems are assigned letter grades for performance by the state.

The Houston County, Geneva County, Dale County and Enterprise City school systems received the top letter grade for the 2018-19 school year.

The area’s largest system, Dothan City Schools, received a B, which was an improvement from the C it received for the 2017-18 grading period.

The only Wiregrass school system that received lower than a C was the Barbour County School District, which scored a D.

The grades are based not just on the latest test scores, but how much students improve in reading and math from one year to the next.

The report cards include information about the percentage of students proficient in subjects, information on academic growth and chronic absenteeism at each school.

The cards also include demographics about the school and school system and the credentials and experience of educators at the school.

The latest report cards include enhanced graphics and features to make it easier to view data and compare school systems, state education officials said. This is the third academic year that the letter grades have been released.

“We hope this can be used as a catapult to jumpstart conversations about what is working in public schools as well as identifying areas that may need support and/or additional resources,” state Superintendent of Education Eric Mackey said in a statement.

Legislators voted in 2012 to require A through F grades for schools and school systems.

The school report cards can be viewed at the state department website.

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