Belfry Middle School (Pike County) was recently recognized as a as a 2010 Blue Ribbon Lighthouse School of Excellence by the Blue Ribbon Schools of Excellence, Inc. Belfry Middle is the first public middle school in Kentucky to receive the award. Representatives from the school recently traveled to Orlando to receive the award.
Schools selected as a Blue Ribbon School of Excellent are judged by nine standards. They are:
- Student focus and support
- School organization and culture
- Challenging standards and culture
- Active teaching and learning
- Technology integration
- Professional community
- Leadership and education vitality
- School, family and community partnerships
- Indicators of success
“The vision statement of Belfry Middle School is to be ‘Kentucky’s Best.’ This statement appears throughout the school on signs, bulletin boards, banners, and handbooks,” said Bart Teal, president of Blue Ribbon Schools of Excellence, Inc. “The administrators begin morning and afternoon announcements with those words. Teachers and students repeat it like a mantra. Principal Matt Mercer states, ‘If you hear it enough, you believe it.’ That strategy seems to have worked.”
“The school staff prides itself in being a ‘family.’ The culture of the school, which is very apparent, is one of mutual respect, caring, and support,” Teal added. “The staff truly understands the importance of relationships in an educational setting. One teacher summed it up by saying, ‘We care for our kids – and they care for us.'”
The Blue Ribbon Lighthouse School Award is a recognition program for schools designed by Blue Ribbon Schools of Excellence, Inc. Schools are identified and selected for this award based on achievement of excellent performance in all nine major categories of the Blueprint for Excellence. In addition, Blue Ribbon Lighthouse Schools focus on locating successful best practices and programs that work in education to serve as a marker for schools that desire to be high-performing examples for educational culture.
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Blue Ribbon Schools of Excellence, Inc.