published Friday, September 16th, 2011

Rhea, Chattooga schools get Blue Ribbon honor


by Andy Johns
  • photo
    Jerry Levengood, the director of schools in Rhea County, Tenn.

An elementary school in Dayton, Tenn., and another in Trion, Ga., have been named National Blue Ribbon Schools by the U.S. Department of Education.

Trion Elementary in Chattooga County and Frazier Elementary in Rhea County both are listed among the 305 schools to get the designation Thursday.

“I wouldn’t say that I was surprised, but I’m pleased that someone else has noticed what we’ve really known all along,” Rhea County Schools Superintendent Jerry Levengood said.

Overall, nine Georgia schools and six Tennessee schools made the list, which grades schools based on academic achievement and improvement. Trion and Frazier were the only schools in the Chattanooga area to make the list.

Five schools were awarded Blue Ribbons in Alabama, but none were in the northeastern part of the state.

“It’s a hard award to come by,” Trion Superintendent Phil Williams said. “It’s a tremendous award for our school system.”

Even though his students are young, Trion Elementary Principal Scott Crabbe said they know how big the honor is.

“They’re well aware of the importance of the scores,” he said. “I know they’re going to be excited when they hear the news. We’ll do some sort of celebration with them.”

Crabbe, Williams and Levengood credited teachers, students, parents, administrators and support staff in earning the award.

“They can challenge the ones that have the best minds and bring up the ones that are struggling,” Levengood said of the staff at Frazier.

Georgia Schools Superintendent John Barge said he was thrilled the schools were recognized.

“These awards are just another example of some of the great things happening in our schools,” he said in a prepared statement.

A news release from Barge’s department also listed Calhoun High School in Gordon County as making the list, pending the results of Adequate Yearly Progress tests.

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about Andy Johns...

Andy began working at the Times Free Press in July 2008 as a general assignment reporter before focusing on Northwest Georgia and Georgia politics in May of 2009. Before coming to the Times Free Press, Andy worked for the Anniston Star, the Rome News Tribune and the Campus Carrier at Berry College, where he graduated with a communications degree in 2006. He is pursuing a master’s degree in business administration at the University of Tennessee ...

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