ST. FLORIAN — The Alabama Independent School Association has named Riverhill a 2016-2017 Blue Ribbon School.
This is the fifth consecutive year the K-6th-grade school has received the recognition.
The award program evaluates schools throughout the school year and announces the winners in July. Thirty-two schools across the state were named.
Private schools are eligible to receive the award yearly while public schools are evaluated every five years.
According to AISA officials, a school must complete a rigorous application process and exemplify excellence in scholastic achievement, professional learning, student involvement and community interaction.
Riverhill Principal Mary Jane Fowler said the award is validation that good things are going on.
The school begins meeting requirements for the distinction on the first day of classes each year, she said.
“To qualify for this award our students have to go above and beyond in almost all facets of the education process,” Fowler said. “They do science fairs, art shows, academic competitions and our teachers must have a great deal of professional development. It’s an ongoing process, but one that makes us better.”
Fowler said the school’s “never stop trying to improve” attitude has played a role in its receiving the award five consecutive years.
“Our teachers and staff are always just striving to be better than the year before and it’s worked for us so far,” she said.
She added that there’s a bit of pressure in having received the award five consecutive years.
“It’s a personal goal at this point,” Fowler said. “It’s not something you win, you earn it. We want to be able to say at this time next year that we accomplished the goal again.”
Riverhill School serves grades pre-kindergarten through six and will begin the upcoming school year on August 10 in its newly completed facility on Darby Drive in Florence.