2022 KNPS Year in Review

2022 KNPS Year In Review
Posted on 12/30/2022

Dear Knob Noster Parents and Community:

As 2022 comes to an end, we want to take this opportunity to thank each of you for your support of Knob Noster Public Schools (KNPS), our students, and our team.  Through your support and partnership, 2022 has been another standout year for our school and our community.  Provided below is a year-in-review “Top 10 List” of accomplishments. Our students, teachers, and Board of Education continue to prove that KNPS is a national leader when it comes to K-12 education.  We are very proud to share this list of select accomplishments that you have helped us achieve!

10.  Academic Achievement has continued to rank at or near the top of the region over the last seven years.  For the fourth year in a row, Knob Noster High School was recognized by US News and World Report as Missouri’s number one rural high school for college and career readiness.  The district and our team continue to serve as a model for military-connected school districts across the nation.

9.  Sports and extracurricular activities continue to strengthen in Knob Noster.  In almost every area, we have seen increases in student participation.  KNPS welcomed in several new head coaches this year who have united with our returning team of coaches to prioritize respect and quality character among our student athletes.  Overall, our programs are strengthening as a result of strong student and faculty leadership, hard work, and performance. We look forward to the future with excitement about our extracurricular programs!

8.  Community and parent involvement continues to strengthen in KNPS. The input our community provided in the recent parent and community survey was used to design a new Comprehensive School Improvement Plan, which will guide our efforts for the next three years.  Thank you for your input. We appreciate and value your engagement and thank you for making 2022 a year of fantastic engagement and partnership in support of our students!

7.  KNPS is growing! The district enrolled 1430 students in fall of 2015 and increased to 1950 enrollment for fall of 2022.  The Board is aligning resources toward facilities which will support ongoing growth as the district prepares for the B-21 bed down and anticipated open enrollment. KNPS aspires to be the cornerstone for attracting new families, businesses and amenities which will lead to community growth and prosperity.

6.  Financially, Knob Noster Public Schools continues to offer an exemplary return on investment for our taxpayers.  The KNPS local tax rate continues to be one of the lowest in the region, over 30% lower than the regional average.  In 2022, the district was awarded a $1.75 million Department of Defense Education Activity (DODEA) Grant to provide programs in computer science and cybersecurity. This represents the sixth DODEA grant, totaling $6.5 million that has been awarded to the district. Through grantmaking and sound fiscal management, district fund balances have grown from $7.5 million in 2014 to $26.6 million in 2022. The board is now aligning those funds to establish new facilities to accommodate growth over the next 75 years.

5.  The district purchased over 50 acres in 2022 as the future home of a new Knob Noster High School Innovation Campus. Phase I of construction on this project was approved, with groundbreaking set for April 2023.  This project will be supplemented by a $5.5 million FEMA/SEMA grant, supporting the construction of a community storm shelter/collegiate style gymnasium.  Phase I also includes a new Panther Sports Stadium and supplemental facilities, along with safety repairs and renovation of the existing sports stadium.  Phase I is slated for ribbon cutting in late 2024. This month, the board approved planning documents for Phase II of construction, allowing the district to pursue additional grantmaking to support completion of the high school campus.

4.  Employee compensation increases were once again a point of pride in 2022, with the Board of Education approving a fourth consecutive year of aggressive wage increases for employees.  Along with base increases, the board approved funding for Career Ladder, a state supplemented program allowing teachers to earn up to $5,000 in additional pay for additional work.  The board continues to take additional steps to recruit and retain high quality employees for our students.

3.  Knob Noster Public Schools continues to strengthen its local, state, and national reputation as a leader in public education.  In April 2022, the district hosted the First Lady of the United States and the United States Secretary of Education as they recognized KNPS as a national leader in military child education, during month of the military child.  With over 70% of KNPS students being connected to the Whiteman AFB mission, our district continues to help lead the charge with the Department of Defense Education Activity.

2.  For the third year in a row, the district expanded preschool offerings through a variety of programming, including the recently established Little Wingman program, which was established in 2020 through a $1 million DODEA Grant.

1.  Above all other goals, Knob Noster Public Schools seeks to develop quality character, citizenship, and patriotism within our students, with this effort being championed through our Panthers R.O.C.K character program and The Leader In Me program.  In 2022, our students lived these values in many ways, most notably through giving back through over 30 charitable fundraiser events to support various community agencies and individual needs.  Countless service activities also occurred throughout the year.  We send a HUGE thank you to our students for living out the most important element of our school mission!

As we ring in 2023, we want to thank you once again for your partnership in helping these accomplishments, and many others, happen for our students!  From the Knob Noster Panther Family to yours, we wish you the best of health, happiness, and prosperity in 2023. We look forward to our ongoing partnership with you!

Knob Noster Public Schools – Our Mission Is Student Success!

Very Respectfully,


Jerrod Wheeler, Ed. D.
Superintendent of Schools