Washington Achievement Award

Among the five schools in the Puyallup School District to receive the Washington Achievement Award, Puyallup High School was the only secondary school to receive an award.
Washington Achievement Award winners are selected using the State Board of Education Revised Achievement Index and are based on state-wide assessment data within the past few years. There are five categories overall: Excellence Progress, Reading Growth, Math Growth, Extended Graduation Rate and English Language Acquisition.
Puyallup High School was recognized for math growth, making this the second year of receiving this award having earned it last year for science growth.
Head of the Math Department, Carrie Keizur expresses her feelings on winning the award in math growth this year.
“It feels great; we work really hard in the math department and it is nice to know that the things we are doing are paying off. It shows our hard work and looks good for the school,” Keizur said.
Principal Eric Fredericks also expresses his pride in the school’s triumph.
“I felt proud to have received it but given my competitive nature I was elated to have been the only secondary school [in the district] to receive the award. I think what is most significant is it speaks to the hard work of our students and teachers to get better at what we do,” Fredericks said. “One of my themes this year is to ‘be phenomenal’ and the whole idea behind being phenomenal is to get better every day. Excellence is a habit. It does not just happen and any way we achieve excellence of any sort and in this case by winning the achievement award is just by working hard and doing the right work.”
In addition to boosting the morale of students, the award serves as a symbol of excellence for visitors to the school. Fredericks speaks about what he hopes the award will do for the reputation of the school.
“I think [one of] the benefits [of the award] is perception and for a lot of people perception is reality and when people see these banners hanging on the walls of our school, given that both of the banners are fairly recent in history, it speaks a lot to the people who come into our building and see the banners about the quality of opportunities students have to be successful here,” Fredericks said. “I think a lot of people find comfort in sending their students to a great school. Greatness is reflected in those awards and that is ultimately then what is perceived by people who come here.”
Keizur reflects on the reasoning for why the school received the award.
“I look at it as more our whole school, I think the kids are working hard and the teachers are working hard and it just benefits everybody. I just think over the years we are more familiar with the standards and the important things that we are supposed to be teaching and really focusing on those aspects,” Keizur said.
Fredericks reflects on what receiving the award means to him personally and what it means as a whole for the school.
“I love this school. It is a historically significant school not only in this community but in this state and to be able to stand in front of 500 of my constituents at an awards ceremony and receive an award on behalf of the students and teachers of this school is very special. It is also an honor that PHS was the only secondary school in the district to be recognized,” Fredericks said.