The Blaine County Journal News-Opinion - We've Got The County Covered

Chinook High School Wins School of Excellence Award


June 23, 2021

On June 7, Senator Jon Tester posted to social media a compliment to Chinook High School educators for helping the school to win the 2020 American College Application Campaign (ACAC), School of Excellence award. These awards, which were presented virtually in April, are given to a group of exemplary schools across the nation that are supporting students in their pursuit of postsecondary success.

“Montana schools continue to impress! Chinook High School has been awarded the ACT School of Excellence Award. Chinook’s educators have worked hard to help Montana students pursue postsecondary success. Keep it up,” Tester wrote on his Facebook page.

As part of ACT’s Center for Equity in Learning, the ACAC is committed to removing barriers and to providing support and clarity for students in the college application process. The ACAC selects award recipients based on their demonstrated commitment to student success and for serving as exemplary models for their state’s application campaign and timely submission of student application data. This is the second year that ACAC School of Excellence awards have recognized outstanding schools.

The ACAC is a national initiative designed to increase the number of first-generation college students and students from low-income families who pursue a postsecondary degree. The purpose is to assist high school seniors as they navigate the college application and admissions process and to ensure that each participating student submits at least one admissions application.

Expressing her gratitude, ACAC Director Lisa King shared these comments: “I want to thank everyone who played a role in helping the class of 2021 apply to college. We know that this was an especially challenging year for students, and we are especially grateful to our nation’s educators who innovated and found ways to virtually support students as they navigated a complex and sometimes confusing process.”

According to Chinook High School Principal Matt Molyneaux, this award is based on different activities and events that Fay Friede, the School Counselor, sets up during college application week.

“This is an award that, through Fay’s work, we have received recognition,” Molyneaux said. “Fay holds a FAFSA Night with the students and invites their parents for a session on filling out all the necessary financial aid forms. She also creates and posts signs for every teacher’s classroom with their alma mater listed, along with an invitation to learn more information—something like: ‘I graduated from Montana State University; ask me about becoming a Bobcat.’ We also wear our college colors or a sweatshirt with the school’s logo. Because of her efforts, we usually get 100% participation from our seniors.”


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