(WAFF) - Six Valley schools have made the U.S. News & World Report's top 20 best schools list in Alabama. Two are in Marshall County.
It always seems there's a lot of talk about sporting events, but in Guntersville and Arab, it's where academics reign.
"I chose to bring my children to this school system instead of the neighboring school system," said parent Shala Murray.
Murray said Arab was the only system she wanted her children to attend.
"You won't find a group of teachers anywhere that care more about kids," said Murray.
It's something students feel also.
"I don't really like English but the English teacher really loves what he teaches so it makes me like it even more than if it were somebody that didn't care," said student Bailey Maze.
The trophy case inside the school isn't for sports. It's for academics.
"Arab High School has always had a history of high academic achievement. I can speak to that because my parents are both graduates," said Assistant Principal Mark Edwards.
To create that culture, Edwards said it's about letting those students excel in advance placement, reaching those at-risk students, and getting career tech to those who just want to work after high school.
"We put students into jobs immediately and they're jobs that are very, what we consider high-paying jobs for a high school graduate," said Edwards.
But Edwards said a receptive community is icing on the cake.
"We have opportunities in a small community like this to pick up the phone, call, and say, 'Hey, I need to try to get a tire on this student's car because they've missed two days of school because they had a flat,'" said Edwards.
On that list, Arab came in at number 17 and Guntersville at number 20.
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