Russ Tilford got a vote of confidence from his employers Monday.

The Lyon County Superintendent of Schools received high marks from the board of education in its annual evaluation of his performance. In his sixth year as head of the school district, Tilford received five Accomplished ratings, one Exemplary and one Developing in the Kentucky Department of Education's tool used for grading superintendents.

"Overall, the board is happy," said Denny Gray, board chairman, in announcing results of the evaluation at Monday's monthly board meeting.

The evaluation instrument, used by all 172 school districts in the state, measures seven different types of leadership -- strategic, instructional, cultural, human resources, managerial, collaborative and influential. Each area is rated Exemplary, Accomplished, Developing or Growth Required.

Tilford's lowest mark was for instructional leadership. Gray explained that the grade was not so much a direct criticism on the superintendent, but the position is ultimately responsible for student performance.

"We expect all schools to be performing at the highest level. Even the best schools could be doing better," Gray said. "We can only judge the superintendent."

Tilford accepted the evaluation.

"I appreciate the honesty and direction from the board," he said. "I know we have work to do and recognize that."

Gray pledged the board's support in whatever Tilford needs to raise instructional performance in the district.