Crownhill named in top 5 percent for math, reading improvements

Principal attributes statewide honor to

a ‘school-wide appetite

for success.’

Crownhill Elementary is receiving the honor of being in the 5 percent highest-improving Washington schools in reading and mathematics over the last five school years.

One of only 55 elementary schools chosen and only one of five schools in Educational Service District 114, which serves Bremerton and the Northern Olympic Peninsula, Crownhill Principal Jill Carlson said it all has to do with their motto.

“‘212 Degrees’ is a motto we implemented two years ago,” Carlson said. At 212 degrees, water boils, producing steam. Our staff and students strive each day to go the extra degree at teaching and learning. This school-wide appetite for success allows us all to experience continued success in math and reading, one degree at a time.”

Sue Mills, executive director at the Center for Educational Effectiveness, a Redmond-based educational research and data-service organization, said the act of recognizing these schools is both prudent and necessary.

“Recognition of the dedication and perseverance it takes to sustain improvement over multiple years is an essential component of supporting our educational system,” Mills said.

Crownhill is being recognized for its sustained improvement at the Great Schools and Exemplary Leaders Institute titled, “Schools of Distinction: What can we learn?”

The institute is sponsored by Phi Delta Kappa International’s Washington State Chapter 1599. Last year, the recognition was known as the State Superintendent’s Schools of Distinction-Learning Improvement Award. The award, now known as the Great Schools Award, uses the same methodology used to determine the “Schools of Distinction” award in 2007 and 2008.

Greg Lobdell, director of research for CEE, said there was a wide range of schools selected to receive the award and in no way did the winners represent any one socioeconomic or ethnic background.

“The award winners represent the diversity of Washington state,” Lobdell said. “Students in these schools range between 2.7 percent and 100 percent poverty and 0 percent to 48.6 percent English language learners.”

For Carlson, the key for Crownhill is to continue to practice its motto all the time, every day.

“Our Crownhill motto is one that can be witnessed upon any visit into our building,” she said.

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