6 district schools honored for achievements
Six schools from the Mukilteo School District were honored for their excellence in education with a Washington Achievement Award at a ceremony held last week at Marine High School.
As ceremony host, Mariner rolled out the red carpet on April 25 for 275 schools receiving awards from across the state. The Washington Achievement Awards honor the state’s top performing schools.
The six district schools that received awards were Mariner and Kamiak high schools and Endeavour, Discovery, Odyssey and Picnic Point elementary schools.
“It’s rewarding, it’s validating for all of the investments that people have in educating the kids,” said Marci Larsen, superintendent of the Mukilteo School District. “Everybody across the school district should be really proud.”
Larsen said the recognition is proof that the work school district staff members are doing is having a positive impact on the students.
“It’s working,” she said. “We’re making gains on student achievement and doing good work on their behalf.”
Each school’s improvement was determined by how the school was assessed in the Achievement Index, which the Washington State Board of Education uses to assess the school’s performance. The board analyzes school performances from the 2009-10 and 2010-11 school years.
The schools are awarded based on their performance in seven categories: overall excellence, language arts, math, science, extended graduation rate, improvement, and how they close their achievement gaps.
Odyssey Elementary was recognized for the second consecutive year for its overall excellence.
“Our staff, students and volunteers have worked incredibly hard to overcome challenges and to continue to increase student achievement in an era of declining resources,” said Principal Cheryl Boze. “They deserve to be very proud of their success.”
Discovery Elementary was also awarded for its overall excellence as a school.
Endeavour Elementary was awarded for its performance in language arts and overall excellence.
Picnic Point Elementary was recognized for closing its achievement gap.
Kamiak was recognized for its overall excellence.
Mariner was awarded for its improvement in language arts.
“It feels fantastic, not only for getting the honor of the award, but being asked to host is pretty special,” said Principal Brent Kline.
Kline said everyone at Mariner deserves credit for earning the honor of being the host school.
“It has everything to do with the students and the wonderful teachers that teach here,” he said. “I think they picked us because we do great things and [Mariner] is a great place to be.”
Randy Dorn, the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, and Phyllis Frank of the Washington State Board of Education presented the awards.
Dorn, whose office partakes in assessing the state’s schools, was excited for the strides Washington schools have made in recent decades. The state now graduates over 80 percent of high school students, he said.
“That growth has been steady,” Dorn said. “In tough economic times, we have made a difference.”
LaVendrick Smith is an intern for The Mukilteo Beacon.