BRISTOL, Conn. (WTNH) — Children who attend two schools in Bristol have something to be excited about.
The Connecticut Association of Schools has named Ellen P. Hubbell Elementary School and Greene-Hills School the state’s elementary and middle schools of the year.
Two schools in the same district being named schools of the year is very rare.
What put them over the top was that grades are good and kids are achieving, but the state said the topper is the school climate.
Staff at both schools said their mission is to know their students and not just their names.
“I went to a baseball game the other day. ‘How did you do?’ Or if I see one of our friends in the hall, ‘how did you do on your football team?’ But it’s not just me, it’s everybody here,” said Kristine DeLeo, principal at Ellen P. Hubbell School. “When you have that connection with kids, they want to do their best for you. They want to please you, they want to succeed.”
The kids said the personal touch works.
“It shows respect that they actually care about what we’re doing or listening,” said Johnniesa Vail, a third-grader at Ellen P. Hubbell School.
Really knowing the kids is just part of their formula for success. Educators at both schools said they want to make sure the kids have a grown-up they can trust.
“Recognize the students and let them know that they’ve got a lot of adults that are supporting them and rooting them on, it’s a great way just to bring in some enthusiasm for the day,” said Scott Gaudet, principal at Greene-Hills School.
Most of these kids get a double dose of this winning formula. Most who go to the elementary school have Greene-Hills as their next stop.
“When you have all the right elements to the recipe, kids succeed and that’s the most amazing gift of all,” DeLeo said.