Of more than 2,000 public schools in the state, Forsyth County’s Daves Creek Elementary earned a nod as one of eight to compete for a national education title.
In September, the school learned it received the National Blue Ribbon School award for the first time.
To State Superintendent John Barge, that called for celebration.
“We all know where we need to improve,” Barge said, “but we also need to celebrate when we are successful and recognize the good work that you all are doing every day.”
Daves Creek Elementary School students, faculty and staff celebrated the National Blue Ribbon achievement Thursday with a ceremony and a surprise ice cream party from Blue Bell.
The U.S. Department of Education’s Blue Ribbon Schools program has honored nearly 7,500 schools in the past 31 years.
This year, 286 public and private schools received the award in either the category of improvement or high performance, for which Daves Creek received the honor.
Forsyth County School Superintendent Buster Evans thanked Barge for recognizing and visiting the school. He also commended the students and teachers on a rare achievement.
“You guys have accomplished something that few students can say they were ever a part of,” Evans said, “and that is to be a student, teacher or employee in a National Blue Ribbon School.”
As Principal Eric Ashton accepted a certificate from the Georgia Department of Education, the cafeteria erupted with applause. He credited the “unwavering dedication” of the teachers as a big part of the school’s success.
“Looking ahead, we will continue as a top performing school,” he said. “Our future is bright and this award is just the beginning … This award should be inspiration and motivation every day to do. To do more, to think more, to question more, to explore more and to improve.”
The officials also recognized Big Creek Elementary School on Thursday for its 2011 National Blue Ribbon and 2012 Georgia School of Excellence honors.
In Forsyth County, Big Creek has earned the Blue Ribbon three times, and Otwell Middle School twice.