A mayoral proclamation made Monday “Amherst Junior High Day” to recognize the success of educators, who this year earned National Blue Ribbon status.
“I’ve always said the schools are the backbone of our community,” said mayor David Taylor before reading his decree to principal Ryan Coleman.
Taylor highlighted the successes that led President Barack Obama to honor AJHS as one of the premier schools in the nation, attaining an elite status.
Since 1982, fewer than 8,000 schools in the U.S. have earned Blue Ribbon recognition. Only 285 public schools – and remember, there are nearly 100,000 in America – were named Blue Ribbon winners this year.
Taylor’s proclamation was met with a standing ovation from junior high teachers who attended Monday’s Amherst board of education meeting.
“Really, this is your proclamation,” Coleman told them.
School board member Ron Yacobozzi said a lot of people “are amazingly proud of what’s happening in Amherst.”
“You set the bar very high. That’s good. Now the rest of the guys have to follow,” he told AJHS staffers. “People watch everything we do. You guys can be proud to know you’ve set a precedent.”
Board member Bob Kamnikar thanked teachers at earlier grade levels who “feed” the junior high, saying that’s where much of the school system’s success begins.
In related news, a dozen banners have been purchased showcasing the junior high school’s accomplishment. They will hang in downtown Amherst.
“You have put Amherst on the national education map,” superintendent Steven Sayers told educators, holding up a banner for all to see.
He said Sen. Gayle Manning (R-North Ridgeville) has invited a delegation from the Amherst Schools to travel to Columbus sometime in January (the date is to be determined) to be recognized on the Ohio Senate floor.
Jason Hawk can be reached at 440-988-2801 or @EditorHawk on Twitter.
Photos by Jason Hawk | Amherst News-Times Mayor David Taylor shakes the hand of Amherst Junior High principal Ryan Coleman, handing over an official proclamation recognizing the hard work of local educators.