CONGRATULATIONS to the staff at Arcadia Elementary for receiving a 2018 School of Distinction Award from Washington’s Center for Educational Effectiveness (CEE). Now in its 12th year, CEE’s School of Distinction award honors the highest improving Washington State schools for improved performance for ALL students. More specifically, the School of Distinction designation is awarded to elementary and middle schools that show sustained performance over five years in English Language Arts (ELA) and Mathematics. We’re so excited about the work going on throughout Deer Park Schools and are thrilled that Arcadia has received recognition for the ways they’re changing the lives of kids!

The School of Distinction award celebrates the passion, work, and commitment demonstrated by teachers and leaders in schools throughout Washington state – schools where exemplary educational practice is resulting in improved student learning for all students. Every School of Distinction has a unique story to tell. From urban to rural, high poverty to economically stable, homogeneous to ethnically and linguistically diverse, the schools selected for this award demonstrate that dedicated professional educators can drive significant improvement in teaching and learning.

The awards are not intended to replace state and federal accountability measures of school performance, rather the award serves as a supplemental measure to recognize and celebrate school staff, students, and leaders who improve performance for all students over a sustained period of time in English language arts (ELA) and mathematics. The methodology and design principles have remained unchanged over the 12 years other than allowing for the transition from Measures of Student Progress (MSP) to Smarter Balanced Assessments (SBA) starting in 2015.

  • The School of Distinction award recognizes sustained improvement using five years of improvement in performance data.
  • Performance is defined using a composite score based on two foundational skills—literacy and numeracy. Specifically, results from the state assessments over those five years of data in both English language arts (ELA) and mathematics.
  • The CEE uses publicly available data to ensure transparency and ease of interpretation.
  • The CEE recognizes that across our K‐12 system there are different performance characteristics by grade bands (elementary, middle/junior high, and high schools), honoring top 5%.
  • The award seeks to recognize meaningful improvement: A small number (5%) of schools who have demonstrated sustained improvement in both ELA and math over a 5‐year span (elementary and middle/junior high schools) and a sustained improvement in graduation rate (high schools).
  • Detailed methodology whitepaper is available for download using the following link:  CEE School of Distinction Methodology






  • Nancy Howard

    Wow!! Fantastic work Arcadia!!

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