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McHenry County Elementary School Receives National Blue Ribbon Honor

District 300

Eastview Elementary School in Algonquin was honored as a National Blue Ribbon School.

This is the first time in more than three decades (and the second time ever) a school in Community School District 300 has received the distinction.

The award recognizes either “Exemplary Achievement Gap Closing” or, like Eastview, “Exemplary High Performing” schools.

It’s based on student scores placing in the Top 15 in the state for Math and English.

Jim Zursin is the principal at Eastview.

“It's everything,” he said. “I mean, I've always believed that if you can read, understand what you read and then you can communicate about it, and then also do some math, you're in good shape for the future.”

Zursin said they got the call that they were nominated late last year. A team of teachers and staff worked on their application all the way through spring break.

He said he was especially happy for his teachers and staff because the work they do is behind the scenes, which often goes unnoticed.

“We have, in a way, a very competitive group of teachers. So, in other words, they have a bar high and they expect their kids to get there, and they motivate the kids to reach those goals," he said. “And, the other thing is, no matter who you are as a student, you play better when you're on a winning team.”

Zursin says he hopes the whole school recognizes how special the award is. And he says they’re already looking at how they can improve this year.