RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Public schools across Virginia have earned the 2009 Governor's Award for Educational Excellence. That award is the highest honor under the State Board of Education's index of performance incentive program.
This year is only the second year that Virginia schools have received the award, but twice as many schools have met or exceeded the criteria to be honored.
In all, 162 schools received the award:
Richmond - J.E.B. Stuart Elementary.
Chesterfield - Bettie Weaver Elementary, Grange Hall Elementary, Midlothian High, Midlothian Middle, Robious Elementary, Robious Middle, Swift Creek Elementary, Swift Creek Middle, W.W. Gordon Elementary and Woolridge Elementary.
Hanover - Hanover High, John M. Gandy Elementary and Rural Point Elementary.
Henrico - Gayton Elementary, Nuckols Farm Elementary, Pocahontas Middle, Shady Grove Elementary, Short Pump Elementary, Short Pump Middle, Springfield Park Elementary, Tuckahoe Elementary and Twin Hickory Elementary.
Goochland - Goochland Elementary
The schools on the awards list have gone above and beyond the minimum requirement of accreditation, and have met all state and federal achievement benchmarks for at least two consecutive years. The schools have also met strict guidelines for elementary reading, enrollment in college level courses, and attainment of advanced diplomas, among others.
State superintendent Patricia Wright says the work is a challenge and that the growing number of schools receiving it this year, is a testament to their dedication.
Statewide, 544 schools earned the Board of Education's own excellence award - the second highest honor.