Bethesda School Honored

Carderock Springs Elementary School in Bethesda is one of six Maryland public schools -- and the only one in Montgomery County -- to be named a 2004 No Child Left Behind national blue ribbon school.

The award is given out annually to schools across the country that demonstrate particularly high achievement in math and reading and to lower-income schools that are exceeding expectations and making great progress in closing the achievement gap. Carderock Springs falls into the first category, with all but a small number of students having scored as proficient or advanced on this year's Maryland State Assessment tests.

In a letter notifying Carderock Springs Principal Linda Jackson Jones of the award, U.S. Secretary of Education Roderick R. Paige wrote that as a recipient of the award, the school is "a national model of excellence from which others can learn."

For the past three years, third- and fifth-grade students at the school have scored in the top 1 percent of all Maryland schools on state tests, Jones said in a news release. Carderock Springs was recognized as a Maryland No Child Left Behind blue ribbon school in March. At Back to School Night last week, Jones told parents of the award while wearing a blue business suit because, she said, "it's the best way I could think of to show how proud we are without it seeming like I'm bragging."

Volunteers Needed

County school officials are seeking volunteers to serve as facilitators in the Study Circles Program, which brings together a diverse group of students, parents, teachers and staff to develop action plans for academic achievement.

The Study Circles Program focuses on understanding race and ethnicity as barriers to student achievement and parent involvement as well as promoting improved communication between administrators, schools and parents.

Those who are interested in becoming Study Circle facilitators must attend a one-day facilitator training session Oct. 15 plus three evening practice sessions Oct. 18 and 25 and Nov. 1.

For more information, contact John Landesman or Ruby Rubens at 301-517-5875 or e-mail john_landesman@mcpsmd.org.

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