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All Honorees

Use search features below to find honorees by district name, program category, or award cycle.

July 2018

Honoree: Mariemont City Schools Category Community/family partnerships

Challenge: Administrators sought to provide more experiential learning opportunities because graduates were declaring college majors with no experience within the associated career fields. “Discovering what you don’t like is just as important as discovering what you do like,” says Brent Wise, director of technology and strategic initiatives.

STUDY BUDDIES—Fifth-graders in Meriden Public Schools mentor first-graders with education technology, demonstrating how to use devices, navigate programs and work together.
Honoree: Meriden Public Schools Category CIO/Blended learning

Challenge: After launching a districtwide 1-to-1 Chromebook initiative, Meriden Public Schools learned that younger children didn’t know how to use this new technology—but older students did.

THE SPANISH CONNECTION—ELL students in Lawrence Township benefit from a dual-immersion program  that includes a research-based enrichment model  of instruction.
Honoree: Metropolitan School District of Lawrence Township Category At-risk/ELL

Challenge: The need for an evidence-based language acquisition program grew as the population of English language learners increased to 25 percent.

THE CIRCLE OF ED—Mount Vernon City School District's new academic vision involved creating three theme-based high schools, including one for arts.
Honoree: Mount Vernon City School District Category Administrative leadership

Challenge: Mount Vernon City School District, an urban system on New York City’s northern border, has suffered through years of academic and structural neglect, causing low graduation rates disparities in access to learning. High illiteracy, suspensions and violence were also pervasive.

COMBINED RESOURCES—Orange County Public Schools has developed comprehensive curriculum resources to ease the burden on teachers.
Honoree: Orange County Public Schools Category Health and wellness

Challenge: A rapidly growing district with little time for professional development had a number of teachers with one to three years of experience. Some lacked content knowledge and pedagogy to teach to standards. Veteran teachers also struggled with the shift to instruction that requires students to learn more critical thinking and analysis.

Honoree: Owsley County School District Category Community/family partnerships

Challenge: Owsley County Schools, located in the nation’s third-poorest county, has struggled with declines in income, population and employment. Just 17 percent of county residents age 25 and over have a bachelor’s degree or higher. Residents also rank in the bottom 25 percent nationally for lifespan.

Honoree: Palisades School District Category College/career readiness

Challenge: Kintnersville, Pennsylvania, needed more medical professionals. Palisades School District wanted to teach high schoolers about various medical careers to encourage them to pursue employment locally.

Honoree: Plainville Community School District Category STEM

Challenge: Students have a responsibility to positively impact global society. Educators must therefore provide authentic and innovative learning experiences that engage students and that promote success in a technology-driven world.

SUMMER PROGRAMMING—Pomona USD's summer program focuses on creating learning opportunities for at-risk and special needs students.
Honoree: Pomona USD Category Summer programs

Challenge: Pomona USD serves 24,250 students; 85 percent live in poverty, 34 percent have been identified as ELLs and 11.6 percent require special ed. Summer programs were needed for all these demographics.

Honoree: Rockdale County Public Schools Category CIO/Blended learning

Challenge: Rockdale County Public Schools wanted to add professional learning time for teachers and expand learning options for students, particularly on inclement weather days.

MEASURING SUCCESS—With a single vision for the entire district, Rowland USD has created an academic environment that stresses innovation and includes hands-on STEM learning.
Honoree: Rowland USD Category Administrative leadership

Challenge: Administrators wanted everyone in the 19-school district following a central vision that would drive instructional initiatives, foster personalized professional development and focus on data-driven decision-making.

COMMUNITY CONNECTION—As part of a five-year strategic plan, Salt River Schools has connected with the Native American reservation to develop cultural curricula and build Native American language skills.
Honoree: Salt River Schools Category Community/family partnerships

Challenge: Salt River Schools—a small system operating on a rural Native American reservation of 11,000 people—faced high turnover, including churning through four superintendents in four years and more than 10 principals in a decade. The instability created uncertainty and led to a decline in enrollment.

FAB LAB—Thanks to partnerships, Turtle Lake students get hands on experience with 3D printers, laser engravers and other manufacturing equipment.
Honoree: School District of Turtle Lake Category Community/family partnerships

Challenge: The School District of Turtle Lake had a shop class where students worked with wood, small engines and welding machines, but it suffered from low enrollment. District officials realized grant funds and new community business partners would improve participation.

WALL-TO-WALL LEARNING—Students in Scottsbluff Public Schools can enroll in any of six academic pathways that offer two dozen career pathways, ranging from cosmetology to electronics.
Honoree: Scottsbluff Public Schools Category Administrative leadership

Challenge: Scottsbluff’s graduation rate was barely 71 percent in 2011 and only 74 percent in 2012. The free- and reduced-price lunch rate has risen to 63 percent, while crime, drug use and child abuse continue to challenge the area. Mobility among residents means the community struggles to maintain its current population while schools face increased needs from English language learners.

SPARKING SUCCESS—Students in Sherman ISD participate in a hands-on manufacturing career track that results in professional certification.
Honoree: Sherman ISD Category College/career readiness

Challenge: A study of local employer needs indicated a shortage of middle-skill workers in manufacturing and health care, while a local education needs assessment called for educating more students about viable careers.

ENGINEERING SUCCESS—Seniors at The Science Academy of South Texas participate in a year-long STEM research project.
Honoree: South Texas ISD Category STEM

Challenge: A senior-level engineering course at The Science Academy of South Texas (a regional magnet school) called for students to research and develop projects in order to use cumulative knowledge and skills. However, student motivation and accountability were lacking.

AN ISLAND OF SUSTAINABILITY—Students in the remote Southeast Island School District in Alaska learn to grow their own produce.
Honoree: Southeast Island School District Category Health and wellness

Challenge: Several of the district’s communities are connected by only a boat or float plane, and only one has a grocery store. Fresh produce is hard to come by and expensive, so getting nutritious food to students is difficult.

DATA DASHBOARD—St. Lucie Public School District's IT department has been able to develop a single, user-friendly platform that collects information from multiple programs.
Honoree: St. Lucie Public School District Category Data-driven decision-making

Challenge: St. Lucie Public Schools ranked near the bottom of 67 Florida school districts in overall performance and graduation rate. Administrators found the available data too general and cumbersome to create actionable interventions.

READY TO WORK—Students in Sumter County School District can earn nationally recognized industry credentials in 13 programs, including as a nursing assistant.
Honoree: Sumter County School District Category College/career readiness

Challenge: The Florida Department of Education and CareerSource Florida created opportunities for high school students to earn nationally recognized industry credentials in an effort to build a workforce-ready population across the state.

LENDING A HAND—With more than 70 percent of students classified as at-risk, Topeka Public Schools has reached out to local companies to "adopt" schools to provide coats, shoes and other clothing.
Honoree: Topeka Public Schools Category Community/family partnerships

Challenge: Topeka Public Schools has a high rate of at-risk students, with more than 70 percent receiving free- or reduced-price lunch. Statewide funding cuts have limited resources for food, clothing and mental health care.