Surry Early Collegeearns Lighthouse Award

David Broyles

February 10, 2014

PINEHURST — The Surry Early College High School of Design has received the North Carolina Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (NCASCD) Lighthouse School Award.

The award, according to the association, is for innovation, leadership, and excellence in student achievement.

“The Surry Early College High School of Design is a high school that graduates all of its students, (a) school that sustains an attendance rate above 96 percent, a school which outperforms all other high schools in the district and graduates students with college credentials,” said Director of Communications, Instructional Media, and Teacher Quality Sonia Dickerson. “Under great leadership coupled with master teachers, the Surry Early College yields unprecedented results.”

Dickerson said the Early College has the highest attendance rate in the district of 96.56 percent. According to information from school officials, the Early College proficiency rate was 98.7 percent in 2011-2012 and 74.3 percent in 2012-2013 school year, the highest proficiency of all high schools in the district. Rates of proficiency are calculated on how well students do on state tests.

Dickerson explained the school’s proficiency rate was one of the highest in the state. She said the average student at the Surry Early College earns 60 college credit hours.

“The name of the award is symbolic to the Early College students because of their leadership potential,” said Amos. “They will become a beacon of light to society.”

Dickerson said around 82 percent of the students at Surry Early College are first generation in their families going to college which means neither custodial parent has earned a four-year degree. She said the Early College is a 1:1 high school and also is a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) school with the highest rate of any other high school in the district of students participating in BYOD.

“Not only does the Surry Early College yield great quantitative results, but this school provides a quality education in a familial atmosphere where students and staff are welcomed and they know each other by name,” said Dickerson. ” The teachers collaborate on lesson plans and develop cross-curricular unit plans, they hold SLAM Poetry (where participants read original poems out loud) contests for their students, and they spend countless hours with individual students counseling, encouraging, and ensuring each student succeeds.”

Other Surry County representatives at the ceremony, which took place during the annual NCASCD Conference, included Early College Teacher of the Year Jenny Alyn Key, social studies teacher Jonathan Amos, Early College Principal Kevin Via, School Superintendent Dr. Travis Reeves, Director of Secondary Curriculum and Instruction Jill Reinhardt, Assistant Superintendent, Instructional Services Dr. Terri Mosley and Board of Education members Sue Stone and Clark Goings.

“It was a wonderful honor to be there for this award. We received this due to the hard work and dedication of the faculty and staff at Surry Early College and the support of the Surry County Schools Central Office and Surry Community College as well as the Surry County Board of Education,” said Via. “I certainly believe the students at the Early College are responsible for this accomplishment as well.”

David Broyles may be reached at 336-719-1952 or on twitter@MtAiryNewsDave.