Montgomery elementary school receives prestigious award

Posted by: Melissa Johnson - bio | email

Montgomery, AL (WSFA) - A local school has received a prestigious honor from the state.

T.S. Morris Elementary School is one of only eight schools in the state to be named a Torchbearer School.

The award is given to schools in high poverty areas who overcome the odds and become high performers.

Students at the school say their school work is anything but boring.

Fifth grader Rodnesha Brown and her classmate Arianna Armstrong say their favorite subject is math.

"It's fun, yet exciting.  And it's challenging," said Brown.

The students are not only having fun learning, but making high marks as well.  It's part of what earned the school the "Torchbearer" title.

Tamara Winston, Principal at T.S. Morris Elementary, said "Part of the criteria means that 80 percent of the students scored in a level three or four in state reading and math tests."

What is also amazing is that the school has at least an 80 percent poverty rate.  Teachers like Alicia Gordon say she's inspired by her students every day.

"I learn a lot from the kids.  To know where these kids are from, and to see them doing the awesome things that they do, it's just wonderful," said Gordon.

"They can be successful, they can be high achievers, and they can make a difference in our society," said Principal Tamara Winston.

Winston says they're proving that no matter what kind of background they come from, their future can be bright.

You can take it from fifth grader, Arianna Armstrong.

"I want to try to be a good student by using what I learned.  I want to try to work my way to college," said Armstrong.

School leaders say they attribute their success to dedicated teachers, teamwork, and parents who get involved.

Seven other schools in the state were named Torchbearer schools, including five in Mobile County, one in Birmingham, and one in Phenix City.

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