Nearly Utah 60 schools recognized for success

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State education leaders are recognizing 59 high-poverty Utah schools for academic success.

The Utah State Office of Education honored 56 schools with Utah Title I High Performing School Awards on Tuesday and three schools with Utah Closing the Achievement Gap Title I School Awards.

Schools that earned the first award had to meet federal testing goals for at least two consecutive years; had to achieve at or above the state level on language arts and math tests; and had to be nominated by their superintendents or charter school leaders.

Darrin Johnson, principal at Hillcrest Elementary School in Orem, which was one of the schools to receive the first award, said his school achieved those goals partly by focusing on language arts and giving struggling students one-on-one tutoring with aides, many of whom are retired teachers.

"It's an honor to receive any type of recognition for the hard work the teachers do," Johnson said.

To earn the second award, a school had to meet federal testing goals two years in a row and also had to reduce, by at least half, the gaps in testing results between the school as a whole compared with groups of students within the school broken down by ethnicity, ability and income.

Mountain View Elementary School in Salt Lake City earned the award by spending three hours a day on reading instruction as part of the federal Reading First program and focusing on student data, said principal John Erlacher. Ninety-four percent of the school's students come from low-income families and 86 percent are learning English, he said.

"It's just amazing what these teachers are able to do, and we have a very involved parent population," Erlacher said.

Utah schools recognized for success

Utah Title I High Performing School Award winners:

Alpine School District

» Hillcrest Elementary

Beaver School District

» Belknap Elementary

» Minersville Elementary

» Milford Elementary

Cache School District

» Lewiston Elementary

» Millville Elementary

» Summit Elementary

Garfield School District

» Antimony Elementary

» Boulder Elementary

» Panguitch Elementary

» Bryce Valley Elementary

Grand School District

» Red Rock Elementary

Iron School District

» Cedar East Elementary

» Cedar North Elementary

» Escalante Valley Elementary

» Enoch Elementary

» Parowan Elementary

» Three Peaks Elementary

Juab School District

» Mona Elementary

» Red Cliff Elementary

Kane School District

» Big Water Elementary

» Valley Elementary

» Big Water High School

Millard School District

» Delta North Elementary

» Fillmore Elementary

Morgan School District

» Morgan Elementary

North Sanpete School District

» Fairview Elementary

» Spring City Elementary

» Fountain Green Elementary

» Mt. Pleasant Elementary

North Summit School District

» North Summit Middle School

» North Summit Elementary

Piute School District

» Oscarson Elementary

» Circleville Elementary

Rich School District

» North Rich Elementary

» South Rich Elementary

Salt Lake School District

» Newman Elementary

San Juan School District

» La Sal Elementary

» Monticello Elementary

Sevier School District

» Ashman Elementary

» Pahvant Elementary

» Salina Elementary

South Sanpete School District

» Manti Elementary

South Summit School District

» South Summit Elementary

Tintic School District

» Callao Elementary

» Eureka Elementary

» West Desert School -- Secondary

Uintah School District

» Ashley Elementary

Wasatch School District

» Midway Elementary

Wayne School District

» Loa Elementary

Charter Schools

» Academy of Math, Engineering and Science

» Da Vinci Academy

» Mountainville Academy

» North Davis Preparatory Academy

» Renaissance Academy

» Walden School of Liberal Arts

Utah Title I Closing the Achievement Gap School Awards:

Salt Lake School District

» Mountain View Elementary

San Juan School District

» Bluff Elementary

Wayne School District

» Hanksville Elementary