The award, given by the CLAS Board of Directors, is one of statewide recognition for a person, persons, school or school system that has a significant curriculum or instructional innovation.
Requiring that recipients have a program or activity that makes a “positive impact on the education of children, high potential for dissemination to other schools or systems, and demonstrate leadership in curriculum or instructional procedures in an Alabama school or school system” the board found favor in the school’s MPower Piedmont program.
The program, initiated in 2009, was key in being selected for the award. Dedication and the use of a modern technology that allows teachers to serve as role models for students enable them to empower students “to fulfill their dreams through the engaging use of technology.”
Teachers use 21st Century tools such as audio-visual presentation equipment, classroom audio amplification systems, wireless slates, student response systems, and wireless Internet access work together with school-provided Ipads and MacBooks to assure every student achieves success. The PCS learning environment promotes the possibility for learning anytime/anyplace.
“Having a commitment to excellence in teaching, an unwavering commitment to students, and leadership devoted to empowering students through the use of technology, PCS is providing students with the skills needed to become productive members of our global society,” stated Aiken in his nomination application.
In the three years since its inception Piedmont City Schools have hosted 59 school districts (six from out of state), eight higher education institutions, four professional organizations, 22 politicians, representatives from the Alabama Department of Education and the US Department of Education, four annual site visits averaging 100 attendees, 15 site visits from teams from one or two school districts, and more than 400 individuals have visited.
“The vision of MPower Piedmont has always revolved around community transformation. To receive this award validates the work of our teachers and staff members, “Aiken said. “It also is a testament to the support that we have received from the community and city administration.”
“Almost weekly, I’m asked how we do we provide Internet access at home for our students and my answer always is based on the support that we receive from the community.”
Other awards and achievements include
• Piedmont High School was named a National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence for 2012
• Piedmont High School has been named in U.S. News and World Report for the last six years as one of America’s Top High Schools
• Piedmont High School was named the 2nd Most Connected High School by U.S. News and World Report
• Piedmont High School was named an Apple Distinguished School for 2011 and 2012
• Piedmont High School was named a CLAS Banner School for 2010
• Piedmont Elementary School was named a CLAS Banner School for 2011
• Piedmont City Schools is a member of the League of Innovative Schools
PCS will be recognized at an Awards Luncheon Tuesday, June 25 during the CLAS Annual Convention in Mobile.