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Crownhill Elementary receives state honor

Crownhill Elementary School Principal Jill Carlson receives the state Title I Improvement award from the state Office of the Superintendent for Public Instruction program supervisor for Title I/LAP Larry Fazzari. The honor comes with $20,000 to help the school continue its improvement efforts.  - Charles Melton/staff photo
Crownhill Elementary School Principal Jill Carlson receives the state Title I Improvement award from the state Office of the Superintendent for Public Instruction program supervisor for Title I/LAP Larry Fazzari. The honor comes with $20,000 to help the school continue its improvement efforts.
— image credit: Charles Melton/staff photo

School recognized for continual improvement in student learning.

When Crownhill Elementary School Principal Jill Carlson and her staff decided to apply for an academic achievement award from the state Office of the Superintendent for Public Instruction (OSPI), they doubled up in their efforts vying for both math and reading recognition.

That gamble paid off as OSPI program supervisor for Title I/LAP Larry Fazzari presented Carlson and her staff with certificates of achievement and $20,000 to help the school continue its improvement efforts.

“A lot of people only apply for reading, so I’m glad to see you’re emphasizing math,” Fazzari said. “A lot of people are afraid to embrace it, but you embrace it and I’m glad you do.”

Crownhill was selected for the honor based on students’ overall performance on the Washington State Assessment of Learning (WASL). To receive the distinction, a school also must meet the following criteria set forth by OPSI:

• made Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) for the past three years.

• designated Title I for the past three years.

• shown significant gains overall — preferably in subcategories such as African American, Hispanic and special education students.

According to the OSPI Web site, the purpose of Title I is “to ensure that all children have a fair, equal, and significant opportunity to obtain a high-quality education and reach, at a minimum, proficiency on challenging state academic achievement standards and state academic assessments.”

As Fazzari handed a plaque commemorating the achievement to Carlson, he noted Crownhill hadn’t applied for the state’s Distinguished School award, which requires four years of AYP and includes a trip to Washington, D.C. for two members of the award-winning staff.

“We will next year,” Carlson quickly replied, crediting her entire staff, students and everyone else who made the award possible.

One of the keys to increasing student achievement at Crownhill has been consistent and frequent communication, she said.

“All kids can learn and we wear bracelets with 211 on them because water boils at 212 degrees, and it takes that extra one degree to make things happen,” she said.

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