Valley Academy of Learning (VAL) has been name a 2017 Washington State School of Distinction for improvement in English/Language Arts and math at the middle school level, sustained over a five-year period. This is the second consecutive year VAL has been awarded the honor.
“At the start of the year I was optimistic that we would receive [the award] again,” said Greg Lovercamp, Program Administrator for VAL. “We got the notification earlier this week, and I was thrilled to share with staff that it had happened again.”
Lovercamp attributes their success to a staff committed to knowing the state standards and working with students individually to help them achieve. “Our teachers have studied the standards and what our students’ strengths and weaknesses are,” says Lovercamp. “Teachers maintain a focus on their goals and develop strong relationships with their students and their families.”
The School of Distinction award is the only one in the state entirely focused on combined improvement in ELA and math for Elementary and Middle Schools, and Graduation Rate for High Schools, sustained over a five-year period. Achieving this award requires continued, intentional effort from leaders and staff members. It is truly an award that recognizes the accomplishments of a dedicated and focused group of adults doing their best work for their students.
The award is sponsored by the Center for Educational Effectiveness (CEE) in partnership with the Superintendents of the Educational Service Districts (AESD), the Washington State School Directors’ Association (WSSDA), the Washington Association of School Administrators (WASA), the Association of Washington School Principals (AWSP), the Washington State Association for Supervision of Curriculum Development (WSASCD).
“Our staff is committed to working together and excited about seeing what we need to do for kids,” said Lovercamp.” We do what we believe is best for our students whether it’s recognized or not, but that banner is pretty nice to see hanging in the front office.”
PHOTO: Jim Mugg teaches middle and high school science at Valley Academy.