Carbondale Middle School earns state academic award
Carbondale Middle School students turned the tables on their teachers Thursday with a surprise assembly to celebrate the school’s winning a state academic achievement award.Carbondale Middle was one of 152 schools in Colorado to win the Governor’s Distinguished Improvement Award. In a written statement, Gov. John Hickenlooper said, “The state is proud to recognize the hard work and dedication demonstrated by the staff and students at these schools.”The award recognizes the top 8 percent of public schools where student test scores showed the greatest improvements over the previous year. Other schools in the area to win the award are Basalt Middle School and the Aspen Community Charter School.At Carbondale Middle, principal Rick Holt said he called a school assembly for Thursday afternoon “on false pretenses.” “We were going to do something to recognize teachers after spring break. But then we got this award and I knew we couldn’t pass up the opportunity,” Holt said. “These are not just words being said about achievement – we have the evidence to back it up.”Once everyone was in the auditorium, the stage curtains swept back to reveal the stage with many empty chairs and colorful balloons, while Kool & the Gang rocked over the sound system. All the teachers were asked to come onstage to be honored.”I tried to read some things I wrote in advance, but I had to have my assistant principal read it because I started crying. It got pretty emotional,” Holt said.His message, delivered by assistant principal Patti Present, recognized the faculty for continually giving time to students.”I see the things they do over and over again, and they find ways to give even more. And when I ask them to do one more thing, they dig deep and somehow find the extra energy to do that,” Holt said Friday.”This is an unbelievably dedicated group of teachers, and I wanted them to hear that from me,” he added.Students also stood up and honored their teachers, along with Roaring Fork School Board member Debbie Bruell. Carbondale Mayor Stacey P. Bernot sent a written message of congratulations to the teachers, with an added note of appreciation spoken from her role as a parent.Holt, Present and others gave each of the teachers a shiny metal “Wolverine Pride and Effort” tag. After school let out for the day, the school staff gathered in the faculty lounge for cake and time together to share the pride of accomplishment.
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