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Milan Village School recognized for excellence

Representatives from the Excellence in Education Initiative join members of the student council and representatives of the Milan Village School in holding up the "ED"ies banner after the presentation last week. The school was recognized as the 2010 Elementary School of Excellence. (Photo by Erik Eisele) (click for larger version)
May 05, 2010
MILAN — Representatives from the Excellence in Education Initiative made a surprise visit to the Milan Village School last week to announce the school had been selected as the 2010 New Hampshire Elementary School of Excellence.

The New Hampshire Excellence in Education Awards, or "ED"ies as they are known to the organizers, recognize New Hampshire schools that meet high standards of excellence. Each year they select one elementary, middle and high school and present them with the award.

"This is a big deal," said Superintendent Paul Bousquet, who attended the announcement.

The entire school gathered in the gymnasium on Tuesday. Neither teachers nor students had been told why the assembly had been called, but calls had gone out to parents the night before mentioning if they could come to school at 10 a.m. something was going to happen.

Sunapee Superintendent Brendan Minnihan, chair of the elementary school selection committee, introduced himself to the crowd of students and asked who remembered him. A number of hands shot up — he was there in the fall when the committee was first looking at the school.

"We're so happy to be here," he told the room full of students, teachers, staff, parents and community members. "This school does some great great things."

He listed off the school's innovative use of technology in the classroom, and the range of resources the school uses to get create interesting learning environments. From Project Wild to Project Learning Tree to partnerships with the Appalachian Mountain Club, White Mountains Community College and Milan Hill State Park, he said, the school seems to make connections that expand learning opportunities.

"You guys are very very fortunate because you have very excellent teachers and staff," he told the students.

MVS Principal David Backler told the children to give themselves a round of applause, because much of this award was thanks to their hard work. He also congratulated the teachers and staff. "Everybody here is dedicated to the one most important thing we do," he said, "educate children."

Superintendent Minnihan presented Principal Backler with a school hand bell, which he rang with full swings of his arm to celebrate the announcement. The Initiative also presented the school with a banner commemorating their award.

On June 12 representatives from MVS will join other state Schools of Excellence winners and finalists will be honored at the "ED"ies award celebration in Manchester. The awards are sponsored by McDonald's restaurants of New Hampshire. They have been sponsoring the "ED"ies since they began in 1994.

Martin Lord Osman
Littleton Chmber
Varney Smith
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