Laurens County School District 55 Wins District Administration National Awards of Distinction Program

December 19, 2023

Laurens County School District 55 (LCSD 55) is honored to announce that the District Administration (DA) National Awards of Distinction Program declared it as a 2024 Districts of Distinction Award Winner on December 13, 2023. 

Amy Dujon, Vice President of the District Administration Leadership Institute said, “The Districts of Distinction Awards embody a commitment to recognizing and disseminating outstanding, locally developed programs that have significantly enhanced student achievement, engagement, and overall educational excellence. Showcasing these impactful programs serves as a source of inspiration and provides replicable success stories for educators nationwide. Through highlighting these impactful models, the awards empower educators to implement similar programs in their districts, thereby facilitating positive and transformative changes in education across the country.”

LCSD 55 is a 2024 Districts of Distinction Award Winner under the College and Career Programs category. LCSD 55’s LEAP (Laurens Education/Employment Alternative Pathways) is a data-driven initiative showcasing the district’s commitment to addressing the shortage of qualified professionals in critical sectors and providing options for students with mental/physical/financial barriers in pursuing higher education.

Dujon elaborated on LCSD 55’s win. She said, “What sets Laurens 55 apart is not only its dedication to preparing students for successful careers but also its pioneering approach to bridging the gap between high school education and professional pathways. Through strategic partnerships with colleges and local organizations, the district has created a progressive educational environment that equips students with valuable knowledge, skills, and certifications while still in high school. Notably, the Project SEARCH initiative has demonstrated exceptional success in providing vocational training and employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities, achieving an impressive 85% employment rate. Laurens 55’s forward-thinking approach not only benefits students but also contributes to the overall growth and development of the community, making it a well-deserved recipient of the National District of Distinction Award.”

LCSD 55 Superintendent Dr. Ameca C. Thomas is pleased and humbled by this high honor. She said, “We are incredibly honored to receive the national DA Districts of Distinction Award out of hundreds of applicants across the nation. This recognition is a validation of our commitment to providing multiple opportunities for our students to be successful and have a competitive advantage in today’s ever-changing world. Our vision has always been to create an educational environment that not only prepares students for success in their chosen paths but also empowers them to make a positive impact on future generations. None of this would have been possible without the tireless dedication and hard work of our exceptional staff. We are deeply grateful for their unwavering support and their role in achieving this extraordinary accomplishment.”

In honor of this achievement, Laurens County School District 55 will be featured in the next issue of the National District Administration Magazine.