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Two local schools receive state honors

Elementary schools in Spotsylvania and Stafford counties were recognized Wednesday as having earned the 2013 Board of Education Distinguished Achievement Award.

Chancellor and Garrisonville elementary schools were the only schools in the Fredericksburg region to receive that honor and among 98 statewide. One school district—West Point—also won the award.

The award goes to schools and districts that “met all state and federal benchmarks for at least two consecutive years and made progress toward” goals set by the Virginia Board of Education and Gov. Bob McDonnell.

McDonnell also announced two other education awards, the 2013 Governor’s Award for Educational Excellence and the 2013 Board of Education Excellence Award.

The three awards are part of the Virginia Index of Performance awards given for “advanced learning and achievement,” according to a joint news release from the state Board of Education and McDonnell.

VIP is an incentive program created to “recognize schools and divisions that exceed minimum state and federal accountability standards and achieve excellence goals established by the governor and the board,” the statement said.

In total, one school division and 151 schools were recognized as VIP award winners on three levels, based on performance for the 2011–12 school year.

“Excellence doesn’t just happen; it is achieved through hard work and a commitment to continuous improvement and innovation,” McDonnell said in a prepared statement. “I congratulate the students for the accomplishments these awards recognize and the outstanding teachers and other educators who prepared them to excel. We are blessed to have some of the finest schools and teachers in the nation. We must continue to ensure that all students have access to the high quality education they deserve.”

The Governor’s Award for Educational Excellence went to two schools: Rocky Run Middle in Fairfax County and Kemps Landing Magnet in Virginia Beach.

The Board of Education Excellence Award went to 51 schools.