Utah State University’s mascot Big Blue, Miss Utah 2010 and several other guests spent the afternoon with students from Lewiston Elementary School Nov. 12. During an assembly Friday, the school was recognized as a 2010 Blue Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education. Cache County School District Superintendent Steve Norton said there are around 100,000 schools in the nation, and less than 1 percent of those are ever recognized for the Blue Ribbon Award. Norton said he believes Lewiston is the first school to receive the award in Cache Valley’s history.To Lewiston Elementary teachers, Principal Adam Baker and the political leaders and parents who were at the assembly, Norton said, “Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for setting the example to the rest of Cache Valley on how great a school can really be.”Lewiston Elementary is one of two schools in Utah to win the award this year, and one of 304 public and private schools in the nation. Deputy Superintendent Mantell Menlove attributed the school’s success to the community and parents, the school’s leadership and its teachers and staff.He continued, “But most of all, Lewiston Elementary is a Blue Ribbon School because it has a whole bunch of blue ribbon students who go here.”Big Blue and USU cheerleaders taught the kids the hand motions for USU’s song the Scotsman, and Miss Utah 2010 Christina Lowe and Miss Utah Outstanding Teen 2009 Marisa Nielsen each performed a song for the students.During Nielsen’s vocal performance of Miley Cyrus’ “The Climb,” nearly every girl in the audience sang along – even the ones that didn’t know the words. Nielsen told the kids that school can be hard, but it’s OK to ask for help from teachers, parents or even peers. Lowe told the kids they “can be whatever you want to be” with a positive attitude and hard work, and encouraged them to write their goals down. In fifth grade, Lowe had written down that she wanted to sing and to be a public speaker, both of which she does as Miss Utah, and said she was glad she wrote down these goals. Next to the stage during the assembly, hundreds of brand new books lined a wooden table. In a month, these books will arrive in their new home at a school for orphans in Uganda.The students of Lewiston Elementary School are being encouraged to earn $1 each to purchase one of the books, and then write why they love to read in the front cover. The books, inscribed with Lewiston students’ messages, will be delivered by volunteers to Uganda in December.”You are helping people halfway around the world,” said Sunrise Elementary teacher Stacy Blauer, who spent three weeks providing service in Uganda. “To me, that’s a great thing, boys and girls.”The kids who will receive the books in Uganda have next to nothing and will be very excited to receive the books, she said.- firstname.lastname@example.org
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