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Austin ISD Earns Honorable Mention for Innovation and Excellence in Public Schools

District one of five chosen for schools with more than 20,000 students

Austin ISD—along with Denton, Fresno, Peoria and Richland school districts—earned honorable mention in the 23rd annual Magna Awards program for school districts with more than 20,000 students.  

The award honors AISD’s Board of Trustees for its leadership in supporting innovations in how the district serves students with dyslexia. The program goal was to send a teacher from each elementary school in the district through a two-year certification program to teach Academic Language Therapy, as well as to support a strong early identification process. Implementing these changes reduced the backlog of students waiting to be tested and identified as dyslexic. It also provided teachers with tools to better meet the unique needs of this group of students.

Sponsored by the National School Boards Association’s flagship magazine, American School Board Journal, the Magna Awards recognize school districts nationwide and their leaders for taking bold and innovative steps to improve the lives of students and their communities. The Magna Awards are supported by Sodexo.

“Creativity and innovation are needed to help students realize their full potential,” said Thomas J. Gentzel, NSBA Executive Director and CEO. “The Magna Award-winning districts are prime examples of how public schools all over the country are working to give students a high-quality education and life.”

This year’s three grand prize, 15 first place and 15 honorable mention winners were selected from more than 200 submissions in three enrollment categories—under 5,000 students, 5,000 to 20,000 students and more than 20,000 students—by an independent panel of school board members, administrators and other educators.

The 2017 Magna winners are highlighted in the April issue of ASBJ and will be formally recognized on March 25 in Denver at the School Leaders Luncheon, which is part of NSBA’s Annual Conference.

For a full list of winners, please visit

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National School Boards Association

The National School Boards Association is the leading advocate for public education and supports equity and excellence in public education through school board leadership. The association represents state school boards associations and their more than 90,000 local school board members throughout the U.S.

Sodexo in North America

Sodexo, Inc., headquartered in Gaithersburg, Md., funds all administrative costs for the Sodexo Foundation, an independent charitable organization that, since its founding in 1999, has made more than $27 million in grants to end childhood hunger in America.