"It's been a long time since it was like that," he said. "That's what Granger games were like when the community came together for football games — because, what else did we do?"
Woodward said perceptions of the school are changing from both the outside and inside. For years it was seen as a "failing school" because it regularly fell short of federal testing benchmarks under the No Child Left Behind Act, while others deemed it a gang school, "which is absolutely not true," she said.
Notable successes include changing the way students and outsiders view the school. For the first time since NCLB went into effect in 2002-03, Granger met the testing standards for the 2010-11 school year. Last school year, there was a 17 percent increase in on-time attendance, a 25 percent reduction in failing grades, and 20 percent more students took and passed Advanced Placement tests than the previous year.
"There is a great deal more spirit, so that's rising and that's coming up," Woodward said. "I think there's a lot of things to make kids proud of themselves and proud to be from Granger High."
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