Elementary schools in Smyrna and Seaford have been named 2023 National Distinguished Schools for the extraordinary success of their students.
Smyrna Elementary School (Smyrna School District) was recognized for closing the achievement gap between student groups, and the academic progress that the students made during the 2022-2023 school year on standardized achievement tests.
West Seaford Elementary School (Seaford School District) was recognized for excellence in serving special populations, and the growth and progress towards English Language proficiency that the multilingual learners made during the 2022-2023 school year.
The National Association of ESEA State Program Administrators has been selecting examples of superior, federally funded school programs for national recognition through the National ESEA Distinguished Schools program since 1996.
ESEA refers to the 1965 Elementary and Secondary Education Act.
Under the law, federal grants are provided to districts serving low-income students. The grants go toward textbooks and library books, funding for special education centers and scholarships for low-income college students.
It also provides federal grants to state educational agencies to improve the quality of elementary and secondary education.
Schools are eligible for the recognition if it has a poverty rate of at least 35% for the selected year. They are honored for success in at least one of these categories:
- Schools exhibiting exceptional student performance and academic growth.
- Schools that have closed the achievement gap between student groups.
- Schools that show excellence in serving special populations of students, such as homeless, migrant and English learners.
Sixteen additional schools have been recognized for their progress in three categories:
- Exceptional student performance and growth on the state’s assessment for grades 3-8.
- Academic growth and closing the achievement gap between student groups on the grade 3-8 assessment.
- Excellence in serving special populations where multilingual learners showed exceptional growth toward meeting proficiency on the state-administered ACCESStest for multilingual learners.
2023 Recognition School Award Winners for Exceptional Student Performance
- Claymont Elementary School (Brandywine)
- Lake Forest East Elementary School (Lake Forest)
- Phillip C. Showell Elementary School (Indian River)
2023 Recognition School Award Winners for Closing the Achievement Gap
- Benjamin Banneker Elementary School (Milford)
- Lake Forest North Elementary School (Lake Forest)
- Etta J. Wilson Elementary School (Christina)
2023 Recognition School Award Winners for Excellence in Serving Special Populations
- Brookside Elementary School (Christina)
- Harry Eisenberg Elementary School (Colonial)
- Milton Elementary School (Cape Henlopen)
- North Georgetown Elementary School (Indian River)
- Phillis Wheatley Elementary School (Woodbridge)
- Seaford Central Elementary School (Seaford)
- South Dover Elementary School (Capital)
2023 School of Continued Excellence (recognized last year as well)
- Blades Elementary School (Seaford)
- Rehoboth Elementary School (Cape Henlopen)
- Woodbridge Early Childhood Education Center (Woodbridge)
Raised in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, Jarek earned a B.A. in journalism and a B.A. in political science from Temple University in 2021. After running CNN’s Michael Smerconish’s YouTube channel, Jarek became a reporter for the Bucks County Herald before joining Delaware LIVE News.
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