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Cleveland Board of Education wins excellence award

Cleveland’s Board of Education has won a prestigious award for excellence from the Council of Urban Boards of Education.
Nationwide, three boards received the 2015 CUBE Award for Urban School Board Excellence. The other boards govern the Lincoln Public Schools in Nebraska and the Fort Wayne Community Schools in Indiana.

The annual award recognizes excellence in governance, ability to build civic capacity, success in closing the achievement gap and working for equity in education and demonstrated success in academic excellence.

“These school boards have made notable progress in raising student achievement and engaging the community while confronting some of the most challenging conditions in public education,” Van Henri White, chair of a CUBE steering committee, says in the October issue of the American School Board Journal. White is president of the Rochester, N.Y., school board.
Cleveland's board has shepherded the District through execution of The Cleveland Plan, a sweeping set of reforms for education in the city. Voters backed the plan in 2012 by approving a 15-mill operating levy, the District's first operating levy in 16 years.
The ASBJ article cited the board's approval of new school models, investment in low-performing schools, expansion of high-quality preschool, support for partnerships with charter schools, support for community partnerships and approval of increased intervention services.
The Cleveland Plan is working, Chief Executive Officer Eric Gordon said last month in his annual State of the Schools address. He pointed to "guiding stars" that he said included strong parent involvement, growth in third-grade reading scores, a larger number of children in “high performing” schools, an abundance of highly rated teachers, a record graduation rate and solid public approval ratings.
The board will be honored Oct. 3 during the Council of Urban Boards of Education's annual conference in Phoenix.