The Fraser Institute

The Fraser Institute

November 09, 2011 08:32 ET

The Fraser Institute: Alberta Schools Honoured for Academic Performance and Improvement at Annual Awards for Excellence in Education

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - Nov. 9, 2011) - Fifty-four schools from across Alberta were recognized for ongoing academic improvement and achievement at the annual Awards for Excellence in Education in Calgary Tuesday.

Awards were presented in three categories, each reflecting different aspects of academic success. The Garfield Weston Award for Improvement in Academics recognizes elementary schools that have experienced the fastest, most consistent improvement in their academic performance over the past five years. The Garfield Weston Award for Excellence in Language Arts recognizes elementary schools where, in each of the past five years, students have scored above average on Grade 3 and Grade 6 provincial achievement tests in language arts. The Imperial Oil Foundation Award for Excellence in Science honours elementary schools where students have performed above average on Grade 6 provincial achievement tests in science for the past two years.

More than 260 educators from 37 different schools attended the reception and awards dinner. They are among the 4,922 educators representing 964 schools from across the country that have been honoured at the awards, administered by the Fraser Institute since 2005.

"At these schools, teams of dedicated teachers, administrators, and support staff have found effective ways to inspire learning and academic excellence in their students," said Peter Cowley, Fraser Institute director of school performance studies.

"They show that scholastic success is achievable in every school across Alberta, from Calgary to Coalhurst."

The Awards for Excellence are based on an analysis of Alberta Education's student results data for each school included in the Fraser Institute's annual Report Card on Alberta's Elementary Schools. Out of 654 elementary schools included in the report card, only the top 30 performers in each category were invited to participate in the awards.

Calgary schools dominated the awards, placing first in all three categories.

Bowcroft School of Calgary won the award for Improvement in Academics along with a $3,000 prize. Runners-up were Silver Springs School, also in Calgary, and Youngstown School of Edmonton, which was named a School of Distinction in this category in 2009. Each runner-up received a $1,000 prize.

Webber Academy of Calgary won the award for Excellence in Language Arts along with a $3,000 prize after being named a School of Distinction in 2009. Runners-up were Strathcona-Tweedsmuir School of Okotoks, which was named a first runner-up in 2004, and Windsor Park School of Edmonton, which was also recognized in the Excellence in Science category. Each received a $1,000 prize.

Sunalta School of Calgary won the award for Excellence in Science along with a $3,000 prize. Mount Pleasant School and Windsor Park School, both in Edmonton, were named runners-up and each received a $1,000 prize.

All of the remaining school teams received School of Distinction recognition. The complete list of winners, by category, follows on the next page.

One common misconception about the Awards for Excellence is that only the most privileged schools are honoured for their performance on the province's standardized tests.

"The Awards for Excellence recognizes schools where the hard work of teachers, administrators, and support staff has paid off with students testing above average and learning to the very best of their ability," Cowley said.

"The program celebrates public, private, charter, separate, and francophone schools alike to show that academic excellence is possible in every school across Alberta."

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The Fraser Institute is an independent Canadian public policy research and educational organization with offices in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, and Montreal and ties to a global network of 85 think-tanks. Its mission is to measure, study, and communicate the impact of competitive markets and government intervention on the welfare of individuals. To protect the Institute's independence, it does not accept grants from governments or contracts for research. Visit www.fraserinstitute.org.

Backgrounder: Complete list of all Awards for Excellence winning schools

(*recognized in two categories / **recognized in three categories)

IMPROVEMENT IN ACADEMICS

Winner Bowcroft School Calgary
First Runner-up Silver Springs School * Calgary
Second Runner-up Youngstown School Edmonton

Schools of Distinction

Almadina Language Charter Academy Calgary
Belfast School Calgary
Captain John Palliser School Calgary
Dr. E. W. Coffin School** Calgary
Master's Academy** Calgary
Sainte Marguerite Bourgeoys Calgary
St. Cecilia (Bilingual) Elementary School Calgary
Calvin Christian School Coalhurst
Coalhurst Elementary School Coalhurst
Bisset School Edmonton
Richard Secord School Edmonton
St. Clement Elementary/Junior High School Edmonton
Vanier Community Catholic School Edson
Elk Point Elementary School Elk Point
Sister Mary Phillips Elementary School Fort McMurray
St. Gabriel School Fort McMurray
École St. Gerard Catholic School Grande Prairie
St. Jerome's School Vermilion

EXCELLENCE IN LANGUAGE ARTS

Winner Webber Academy* Calgary
First Runner-up Strathcona-Tweedsmuir School Okotoks
Second Runner-up Windsor Park School * Edmonton

Schools of Distinction

Calgary French & International School* Calgary
Calgary Jewish Academy Calgary
Clear Water Academy* Calgary
Dr. E. W. Coffin School** Calgary
Elbow Park School Calgary
Glenmore Christian Academy Calgary
Hillhurst School * Calgary
Master's Academy** Calgary
Nellie McClung School* Calgary
Rideau Park School Calgary
Rundle College Elementary School Calgary
St. Philip Fine Art School Calgary
Sunalta School* Calgary
Trinity Christian School Calgary
Westmount Charter School* Calgary
Crestwood School* Edmonton
Grandview Heights School* Edmonton
Mount Pleasant School* Edmonton
St. Martin* Edmonton
Suzuki Charter School* Edmonton
Westbrook School* Edmonton
J. J. Nearing Catholic Elementary School St. Albert
Sacred Heart Academy Strathmore

EXCELLENCE IN SCIENCE

Winner Sunalta School* Calgary
First Runner-up Mount Pleasant School* Edmonton
Second Runner-up Windsor Park School * Edmonton

Schools of Distinction

Brentwood School Calgary
Calgary French & International School* Calgary
Calgary Waldorf School Calgary
Clear Water Academy* Calgary
Dr. E. W. Coffin School** Calgary
Hillhurst School* Calgary
Master's Academy** Calgary
Nellie McClung School* Calgary
Silver Springs School* Calgary
St. Joan of Arc Elementary/Junior High School Calgary
Webber Academy* Calgary
Westmount Charter School* Calgary
Dapp School Dapp
Crestwood School* Edmonton
George H Luck School Edmonton
Grandview Heights School* Edmonton
Lynnwood School Edmonton
St. Martin* Edmonton
Suzuki Charter School* Edmonton
Westbrook School* Edmonton
St. Thomas Aquinas School Provost
Madonna Catholic School Sherwood Park
Strathcona Christian Academy Elementary School Sherwood Park

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