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46 Education Programs Named 'Ohio's BEST Practices' for 1999.

COLUMBUS, Ohio, May 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Forty-six education programs from 26 Ohio counties have been selected as "Ohio's BEST Practices" in education for 1999. (See list that follows.)

The announcement was made this week by Ohio's BEST, a coalition of more than 100 education, business and community organizations that have united in a major statewide campaign to improve education results in Ohio. Launched in 1995, the BEST Practices initiative honors exemplary, innovative education programs that have been successful in improving the performance of Ohio's students, teachers and schools. Since 1995, 240 programs from 52 Ohio counties have received BEST Practices awards.

"The BEST Practices initiative is the most visible symbol of the BEST coalition's commitment to providing all children in Ohio with a quality education," said BEST Co-chair Robert Wehling, global marketing officer for The Procter & Gamble Company. "This annual program fulfills two important objectives: It offers much-deserved recognition for schools, school districts and communities that are achieving excellent results, and it provides a vehicle for sharing and disseminating new ideas for improving education statewide."

The 46 BEST Practices for 1999 were selected from a field of 228 nominations received from 47 counties statewide. Among the 46 awards are the first ever BEST Practices for Greene, Lorain, Ottawa, Pickaway and Warren counties. All award recipients will be honored at the Fifth Annual Ohio's BEST Awards Gala, which will be held at the Ohio Theatre in Columbus on September 14, 1999. All 1999 BEST Practices will be eligible for a number of additional awards, to be announced at the Gala, for special achievement in the areas of early childhood education, community engagement, high education standards, world-class teaching, and safe and orderly learning environments.

"The 1999 BEST Gala will be a perfect way to kick off the 1999-2000 school year on a high note of celebration and optimism," said BEST Co-chair Sue Gatton, former president of the Ohio Congress of Parents and Teachers. "And since 1999 marks the five-year anniversary of the BEST Practices initiative, we plan to include a special retrospective of selected BEST Practices from previous years at the September Gala. We envision the event as a kind of BEST Practices 'homecoming,' and we invite all previous award recipients to join us."

The 1999 BEST Practices include school-based programs, district-wide initiatives, multi-district collaborations, and partnerships involving businesses, institutions of higher learning and community organizations. Award recipients were required to demonstrate how they reflect one or more of the four cornerstones of the "BEST Schools" education improvement agenda and the coalition's "First Things First" strategy for improving early childhood learning:

* Cornerstone #1: Higher academic standards, with increased assessment

and accountability for students and schools.

* Cornerstone #2: World-class teachers, through increased professional

development, continual assessment and improved accountability for


* Cornerstone #3: Communities invested in education and safe schools,

represented by innovative schools that are safe, secure and disciplined

-- and that are characterized by broad parent/family support and solid

community partnerships.

* Cornerstone #4: Infrastructure for the 21st century, including improved

school funding and governance reforms, as well as needed technology and

facility improvements.

* First Things First: Reflecting all four cornerstones, First Things

First is an early education focus designed to ensure that every child in

Ohio is at least "at grade level" in reading, writing, math and other

core areas by the end of third grade, as measured by his or her

performance on rigorous fourth-grade proficiency tests.

"While there are many different types of programs among this year's BEST Practices, virtually every award recipient reflects an unwavering focus on excellence and a firm commitment to documenting measurable performance improvements," said Sue Westendorf, vice president of the State Board of Education and co-chair of BEST. "These characteristics are consistent with BEST's broad reform agenda of higher academic standards coupled with stronger assessments and accountability."

At the 1999 BEST Awards Gala, BEST also will present one of the previous four years' BEST Practices honorees with its "Planting the Seeds of Change" award. This award recognizes a previously designated BEST Practice that has been successfully replicated in other schools, school districts and communities across Ohio and beyond.

Ohio's BEST Practices for 1999


Auglaize County

Auglaize County Educational Service Center, Auglaize County Opportunities

for Youth Program

Butler County

Butler County Educational Service Center Head Start Program, Promoting

Literacy Through Lending Libraries -- Connecting Families to School

Clark County

Springfield City Schools, Business Advisory Council

Columbiana County

Beaver Local Middle School, Beaver Local Schools, "REACT" (Reacting

Effectively Against Classroom Turbulence) -- A Behavior Management


Columbiana County Educational Service Center, Annual Fall Fair

Cuyahoga County

Glendale Primary School, Bedford City Schools, Team Tutor Program

John W. Raper Elementary School, Cleveland City Schools, Pre-First Grade

Inclusive Model Classroom

Parma City Schools, Friends Around the World Multicultural Kits

Defiance County

Defiance City Schools, Defiance 2000's Neighborhood Learning Centers

Erie County

Perkins Local Schools, Training Community Mentors as Substitute Teachers

-- A Community-Based Staff Development Program

Franklin County

Hannah Ashton Middle School, Reynoldsburg City Schools, Intervention is a

Vital Link in Success for All Students

Heritage Middle School, Westerville City Schools, Student Academic


Huber Ridge Elementary School, Westerville City Schools, Project Spring


Kilbourne Middle School, Worthington City Schools, Webs of Learning CD:

Pioneering a Technology Rich School Culture

New Albany-Plain Local Schools, Technology Proficiency Requirement for


Reynoldsburg City Schools, Increasing the Quality of Student Performance

Through Greater Teacher Accountability -- The Critical Friends Group


Rose Hill Elementary School, Reynoldsburg City Schools, Rose Hill Respect


South-Western City Schools, Math Matters

South-Western City Schools, School/Family/Community Partnerships

Westerville South High School and Westerville North High School,

Westerville City Schools, Career Focus

Westerville North High School, Westerville City Schools and Cheryl & Co.,

Cheryl & Co. Hometown Integrated Project (C.C.H.I.P.)

Westland High School, South-Western City Schools, The Phoenix Academy

Greene County

Beavercreek City Schools, Beavercreek Community 24-Hour Relay Challenge

Hamilton County

Cincinnati City Schools, Cincinnati Federation of Teachers and University

of Cincinnati, Cincinnati Professional Practice Schools

Edwin H. Greene Intermediate School, Sycamore Community Schools, BETTER

ALL TOGETHER -- Discipline With Integrity and Respect

Great Oaks Institute of Technology and Career Development, Placement


Northwest High School, Northwest Local Schools, Senior Honors Seminar

Robert A. Taft High School, Cincinnati City Schools and Cincinnati Youth

Collaborative, Taft-Career and Academic Program (T-CAP)

Scarlet Oaks Career Development Center, Great Oaks Institute of Technology

and Career Development, Creating a Caring Learning Organization Focused

on Student Success and Teacher Growth

Jefferson County

Steubenville City Schools, Leadership Academy 2000

Lake County

Perry High School, Perry Local Schools, Perritech -- Allowing Students to

Reach the Top

Lorain County

Eastern Heights Junior High School, Elyria City Schools and Nordson

Corporation, School-to-Work Partnership With Math Focus

Lucas County

Ottawa River Elementary School, Toledo City Schools, "We Otter Be Writing"

Mahoning County

Mahoning County Educational Service Center, Teacher Liaison Program

Medina County

Hinckley Elementary School, Highland Local Schools, The Train Station to

the Reservation

Muskingum County

Westview Elementary School, Zanesville City Schools, Partners in Literacy

Zanesville City Schools, The James Madison Family Center -- "A

Neighborhood of Learning"

Ottawa County

Port Clinton City Schools, Champions for Children

Pickaway County

Pickaway Elementary School, Logan Elm Local Schools, Conference Showcase

Putnam County

Putnam County Educational Service Center, The Challenge -- Preparing

Students for the 21st Century

Richland County

Madison South Elementary School, Madison Local Schools, MAGIC

Stark County

Minerva Local Schools, Strategic Planning Process -- Looking to the Future

Summit County

Fort Island Primary School, Copley-Fairlawn City Schools, CPI (Competency,

Proficiency, Intervention)

Trumbull County

Girard City Schools, Girard Futures Prep and Awareness

Warren County

Warren County Alternative School

Wood County

Eagle Point Elementary School, Rossford Exempted Village Schools,

Commitment for Success
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Publication:PR Newswire
Geographic Code:1U3OH
Date:May 17, 1999
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