It's been only three weeks since school started, but Thomson Elementary pre-K is already at the head of the class.
Tuesday, Principal Beth Newton interrupted a pre-K parent workshop at the school to read the parents and teachers a special letter.
"Congratulations," said the letter from Daphne Haley, division director of the Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning. "You are among a distinct group of less than 15 percent of all Georgia Pre-K sites to have received all é─˛Exceeds' scores on your pre-K Quality Assessment for the 2004-05 school year. I thank you on behalf of the commissioner for being a program that exceeds our high expectations of quality and provides such great services to the children and their families."
According to Sylvia Tyler, resource coordinator at Thomson Elementary, a regional consultant from Georgia's pre-K curriculum, Bright from the Start, is sent twice each year to audit the school's records and facilities.
Mrs. Tyler said the consultant has a list of standards to check such as confirming all the records are there, that all classrooms have what they're supposed to have, that parents have opportunities to come and know how to make their children successful, that materials are on hand, and that teachers and paraprofessionals are trained.
Mrs. Tyler said the teachers set the goal last year to exceed standards on this year's audit.
"When (Dr. Newton) came in and announced it, we had no idea before, so it was just exhilarating. I was just overwhelmed. We all were, because we knew that was our goal that we had set. We're so excited," Mrs. Tyler said.