Rowan-Salisbury School System wins public relations awards

  • Posted: Thursday, March 28, 2013 12:24 a.m.

SALISBURY —The Rowan-Salisbury School System has received five state awards in public relations through the North Carolina School Public Relations Association’s (NCSPRA) Blue Ribbon Awards Program.

“Our communication efforts are focused on reaching as many people as we can to spread the news about our programs, accomplishments and improvements in educating our students,” Rowan-Salisbury Board of Education Chairman Dr. Richard Miller said in a press release. “We have much to cheer about and these awards indicate that we are heading in the right direction in reaching out to our school families and community supporters.”

Superintendent Dr. Judy Grissom said she thinks this is good news for the school system, and she is pleased that it received awards in a variety of categories.

“We are continually reaching for creative ways to inform everyone about the unique programs and initiatives that are happening in our schools to keep students engaged and excited about learning and teachers excited about teaching,” Grissom said in the press release. “It feels great to know that the state celebrates these efforts with us by awarding us with this high honor.”

A panel of communication and journalism experts judged the entries to determine the best in the state.

Rowan-Salisbury won NCSPRA Blue Ribbon Awards in the following categories:

• Marketing Campaign: STEM Matters – What’s Right With Public Education – Unveiling of the STEM Exploratory Mobile Lab

• Marketing Campaign: Reading Matters – iRead, district event developed through the Media/AIG Department – Kelly Feimster, Director

• Excellence in Writing: STEM Matters – A Reason To Play The Glad Game – Op-Ed news article written by Amy Pruitt, STEM Exploratory Mobile Lab teacher, to promote STEM Matters

• Special Purpose Category: 2012-2014 District Improvement Plan and Elementary Curriculum Guides for Parents, prepared by the Rowan-Salisbury School System Elementary Department – Alesia Burnette, Director

The NCSPRA Blue Ribbon Awards Ceremony was combined this year with the association’s “Final 4” professional development day on March 1 in Greensboro. Attending from the Rowan-Salisbury School System were Alesia Burnette, elementary education director, and Rita Foil, public information officer.

This marks the sixth consecutive year that Rowan-Salisbury has received state blue ribbons for effective communications that serve as a means of recognizing outstanding publications, marketing campaigns, and excellence in writing in public schools. According to the press release, judges complimented the district’s entries as being excellent initiatives that promote reading, STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) and community and parental involvement.

The “STEM Matters: What’s Right With Public Education” marketing program has been selected as a state entry to compete nationally for the Gold Medallion Award through NSPRA (National School Public Relations Association). The winner will be announced this summer during the NSPRA national conference to be held in San Diego, California.

STEM Matters was held at Knox Middle School in September 2012 and showcased science, technology, engineering and math education in the district. Students and teachers demonstrated ways that teaching and learning is being implemented through STEM in the classroom.

The highlight of STEM Matters was the unveiling of the STEM Exploratory Mobile Lab that serves K-5 students across the district. While in the mobile classroom, students participate in engaging, hands-on investigations and activities geared to help spark their interest in career and educational opportunities in the area of STEM. More than 1,100 students, parents and community leaders attended the event.

The mobile classroom was made possible through the generosity of The Blanche and Julian Robertson Family Foundation, Inc., Rowan Regional Medical Center and Duke Energy.

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