Seafords Central Elementary School named National Blue-Ribbon school

By Scott Bleile

Seafords Central Elementary School was one of three Delaware schools to be named a National Blue-Ribbon school by U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos for 2017. The recognition is based on a schools overall academic performance or progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups.

This is such a great honor for not only our school, but also for the Seaford School District said Mrs. Becky Neubert, Central Elementary principal and Delawares National Principal of the Year for 2017.

The blue-ribbon program honors public and private elementary, middle and high schools throughout the country. Three hundred forty two schools received the honor this year, only 290 were public schools, said Chandra Phillips, Central Elementary associate principal. The rest were private and charter schools.

Seaford Superintendent David Perrington was very happy to hear about the award. This is a great accomplishment and a testament to all the hard work Mrs. Neubert and the entire staff does in the school, along with the students and parents. Everybody has to work together or this doesnt happen.

Seafords Director of Instruction Cory Miklus added, This is a tremendous accomplishment for Central and the school district. It shows that we are working hard to reach our goals. I am very proud of the administrators, teachers, students and the community for supporting what we do at our schools.

We received this award for closing the achievement gap among our subgroups in the school said Neubert. Our scores were some of the highest in the state. The reconfiguration in the district did not change Central, we have been able to continue the high level of expectations set by our school and parents, teachers and students have supported those expectations.

Our staff wont give up no matter what it is they want to achieve. They are willing to go the extra mile, together. They struggle together, succeed together, laugh together and cry together. They build relationships with the students and parents.

The schools are honored in one of two categories, based on all student scores, subgroup student scores and graduation rates. Central was recognized for exemplary closing of the achievement gap between subgroups. They were among the states highest performing schools in closing the achievement gap between a schools subgroups and all students over the past five years.

We have had the support of the district office administrators and Seafords Superintendent Mr. Perrington, Neubert said. If we did not have their support with the tough decisions that must be made, this would not have happened. Mr. Perrington and the district staff showed true leadership in the redistrict effort last year, which this honor shows is working.

Phillips added I know this sounds like a clichŽ, but we really do educate the whole student. They learn social skills, global awareness, cultural differences, along with real world activities and the normal education process. We shoot for the best scores. This staff is very competitive and they always want to do better.

Up to 420 schools in the United States, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, the Department of Defense Education Activity and the Bureau of Indian Education are nominated each year. Neubert and a teacher representative will be attending the National Awards ceremony later this year.

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