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Bratt Elementary recognized as five-star school

By By MaryClaire Foster
For the fifth year in a row, Bratt Elementary received the five-star award from Florida State Commissioner of Education, Dr. Eric Smith.
To receive the five-star school award, schools must meet 29 requirements in five different categories, which include community/business partnership, family involvement, volunteers, student community service and school advisory council. Only 14 out of 35 schools in its district received this award.
Principal Sheryl Pomeroy said five-star is about school and community.
Bratt meets the community/business requirement with partnerships by partnering with Von Durant of Century, First Baptist Church of Bratt, Walnut Hill Fire Department and Escambia River Electric Co-op.
Bratt meets the family involvement with its Parent Teacher Association, by providing writing workshops, conferences, reading initiatives involving parents, open houses and fall festivals.
One requirement under the volunteer category is for the total number of hours in volunteer service to exceed twice the number or students enrolled. Bratt has almost four times this amount by having 400 students enrolled and approximately 1,500 volunteer service hours logged.
Five-star schools are required to show significant student community service initiatives and Bratt does so by collecting food for the Manna food bank, collecting can tabs for Ronald McDonald House and supporting veterans by sending them packages.
A School Advisory Council is also a necessary criterion for the award. The council meets eight times a year and presents an annual school improvement plan.
Associate Superintendent for Public &Interagency Affairs Ronnie Arnold said, “It’s a testament to the Bratt community. This is all about parent and community involvement in the community. It’s a two way street. It’s the parents reaching out to the school and the school reaching out to the parents.”