Penn Manor School District’s Letort Elementary has been named a National Blue Ribbon School for 2019 – one of just 362 schools in America to receive the honor.
The Blue Ribbon awards were announced Thursday, Sept. 26, by U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos.
Letort, with 312 students in kindergarten through grade six, was honored as an Exemplary Achievement Gap Closing School. It is one of only 18 schools in Pennsylvania to be nominated for the award by the Pennsylvania Department of Education.
“Letort is extremely honored to receive recognition as a National Blue Ribbon school,” said Carly McPherson, principal. “This award confirms what every student and staff member already knows — that Letort is a very special school where the education of our students is our top priority.”
Letort was honored for “whole school improvement” because reading and math test scores for all students have consistently exceeded state improvement levels in those subjects over the past two to four years.
McPherson said Letort utilizes data decision-making and team meetings to identify each student’s strengths and areas in need of improvement. Teachers engage in small-group instruction to provide enrichment or remediation to ensure the academic success of each child, she said.
Letort is believed to be only the fourth school in Lancaster County to receive the national award, which affirms the hard work of educators, families and communities in creating safe and welcoming schools where students master challenging and engaging content. The award was established in 1982.
“The faculty and administration of Penn Manor have been engaged in ongoing efforts to ensure that the education our schools provide to all children is world class,” said Mike Leichliter, Penn Manor superintendent.
“Letort’s recognition as an Exemplary Achievement Gap Closing School and their work to help all students achieve to their full capabilities is representative of the education across all Penn Manor schools.”
DeVos announced the 2019 recipients in a video message to school officials Thursday.
“We recognize and honor your important work in preparing students for successful careers and meaningful lives” DeVos said. “As a National Blue Ribbon School, your school demonstrates what is possible when committed educators hold all students and staff to high standards and create vibrant, innovative cultures of teaching and learning.”
On November 14 and 15, Blue Ribbon recipients will be honored at an awards ceremony in Washington, D.C.
Congratulations to Letort students, staff and teachers for this tremendous honor!