NORTH AUGUSTA — Hammond Hill Elementary School was announced Friday as one of five National Blue Ribbon Schools in South Carolina.
As pupils watched in their classroom on SMART boards, Principal Janet Vaughan and Dr. Elizabeth Everitt, the superintendent of Aiken County Public Schools, announced this year’s honor.
“The teachers are amazing and provide outstanding instruction at a high level of rigor and engagement,” Vaughan said in a news release. “Our parents are supportive of our efforts and make sure that their children come to school every day prepared and ready to learn.
“We are a school that is committed to excellence.”
The U.S. Department of Education awards the honor to public and private schools where students achieve at high levels or where the achievement gap is closing, according to the release. The South Carolina Department of Education nominated the school for the award last fall. Eight schools in Georgia received the honor, but none was in the Augusta area.
In celebration of the honor, pupils were served blue cotton candy ice cream from Bruster’s on Friday and played on inflatables in the school’s playground during recess.
Two other district schools have been awarded with the honor: Chukker Creek Elementary in 2009 and Aiken Elementary in 1990 and 2005.
Other South Carolina schools recognized as a National Blue Ribbon School this year are: Forestbrook Elementary, Horry County School District; Oak Grove Elementary, Lexington School District One; South Kilbourne Elementary, Richland School District One; and Marrington Middle, Berkeley County School District.