Four Lake Washington District schools honored

When Washington Superintendent of Public Instruction Terry Bergeson announced the winners of her second annual Schools of Distinction last week, four Lake Washington schools were among the 98 honorees.

Alcott and Mann Elementary Schools, both in Redmond, won the honor for the second year in a row while Audubon (Redmond) and Thoreau (Kirkland) Elementary Schools made the list for the first time.

Bergeson presented the awards before an audience of more than 400 principals, superintendents, teachers and parents at Garfield High School in Seattle.

The award recognizes and celebrates schools that demonstrate outstanding improvement in reading and mathematics. The award is given to the top five percent of schools in each level – elementary, middle and high school – that, as a result of improving their students’ skills, have more students achieving at higher levels on the WASL than five years ago.

Leaders from each of the winning schools were presented with a plaque and a large banner reading “School of Distinction – 2008 State Superintendent’s Learning Improvement Award.”

According to the Office for the Superintendent of Public Instruction, the 98 schools share these common strategies for increasing student success:

• Teachers are continuously studying and establishing best practices.

• The staff is committed to building strong "school families" that include all students.

• The staff is committed to the success of every single student.

• The community is an active partner with the school.

“I’m very proud of the hard work that these four schools have done to help every student achieve,” noted Dr. Chip Kimball, Lake Washington School District superintendent. “To have four schools recognized for their progress is a great honor for the district.”

Lake Washington is one of three districts, along with Puyallup and Kent, to have four schools honored. Seattle School District topped the list with five schools honored as Schools of Distinction.

For more information on the Schools of Distinction Award, go to

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