CES nominated for School of Distinction consideration

Published 2:37 pm Friday, September 7, 2018


Clanton Elementary School has been nominated as a School of Distinction to the Council for Leaders of Alabama Schools.

Chilton County Schools Superintendent Jason Griffin made the nomination and said CLAS would announce its decision on School of Distinction awards after Jan 1.

“We are very grateful to be nominated,” Clanton Elementary Principal Rebecca Threlkeld said. “I have one of the most dedicated faculties to trying to have students proficient by the end of second grade, and I am very proud of the job they do. I would very much like for them to be recognized. They are a hard-working group of teachers.”

She said teachers work to meet students’ specific needs as evident through student test data during one-on-one and small group teaching.

“I could have nominated any school in the county,” Griffin said, commenting on the quality of schools in the system.

He said he chose Clanton Elementary “because they have an outstanding pre-k program,” after-school program in partnership with the YMCA and have consistently had good academic achievement.

“(They have an) outstanding staff and administration that work hard for the betterment of students,” Griffin said.

He also commended Threlkeld.

“She truly loves the school and the students, so she goes above and beyond,” Griffin said.

Threlkeld said many students at Clanton Intermediate who were recently recognized by the state for reading scores started at CES.

“Many of those students were in our pre-k program, and one of the research notes about pre-k as they have followed the progress of students who have been through pre-k that get to begin their education a year early, they are the students that are able to make faster gains and who are proficient by third grade,” Threlkeld said.

She said this was one reason Griffin wanted to recognize CES.

“I very much appreciated that, because our teachers work extremely hard to have those students proficient in reading prior to going to third grade, so they can make those gains once they get there,” Threlkeld said.

Clanton Intermediate was in the top 50 on reading scores determined by achievement growth from a test at the beginning of the year compared to a state test taken close to the end of the school year.

Third grade is the first year that elementary students’ test scores are reported as a part of the school system’s achievement and accountability data at the state level.

“I’m thrilled,” Threlkeld said. “Those are our kids, and that’s all we care about — that they are doing well.”

Clanton Elementary has more pre-k classrooms than any other school.

Threlkeld said the afterschool program also gives students additional educational opportunities that help ensure academic success.