Satilla Marsh Elementary School Wins Georgia Progress AwardOctober 20, 2006


Satilla Marsh Elementary School recently received the prestigious 2006 Georgia Progress Award as part of the Georgia Oglethorpe Awards Process, Georgia's highest recognition for organizational performance excellence.

As the only school recognized in the Georgia Oglethorpe Awards Process, Satilla Marsh Elementary School joined other award recipients at an awards banquet held recently at the Loudermilk Center in Atlanta.

Now in its 19th year and one of the most difficult awards in the world for an organization to attain, the Georgia Oglethorpe Award is modeled after the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. The Georgia Environmental Facilities Authority won the 2006 Georgia Oglethorpe Award. Satilla Marsh Elementary School joined the Georgia Army National Guard, the Augusta VA Medical Center and the Carl Vinson VA Medical Center as recipients of the 2006 Progress Award, which is step two in the overall Georgia Oglethorpe Awards Process.

"Applying for the Georgia Oglethorpe Award was a strenuous process that focused on team building and strategic planning," said Satilla Marsh Elementary School Principal Kathie Matthews. "By going through the process, we attained a better understanding of what we must do to be a consistently high-performing school. As a result of this process, we are a more cohesive unit. We donít plan in isolation anymore, we work together as a team," Matthews said.

"It was quite an honor to attend the banquet in Atlanta and to share the stage with some of the most prestigious companies in the world, such as The Coca-Cola Company. Participating in a process such as this lets us know that we're doing the best we can to educate the students at Satilla Marsh," Matthews said.

"Georgia Oglethorpe is an earned award," said Victoria Taylor, Georgia Oglethorpe's Executive Director. "Applying for the award requires a rigorous self- and third-party assessment of your business against the Georgia Oglethorpe (Baldrige) Criteria. All applicants receive a written feedback report detailing their respective strengths and improvement opportunities. Organizations use the criteria to help them create and sustain higher performance levels."

In a congratulatory letter to Matthews, Gov. Sonny Perdue said, "Your journey in using the Georgia Oglethorpe Criteria fits well with my education package, which is intended to inspire and empower students, parents, teachers and all educators to meet high standards of accountability and achievement. I congratulate you and your team as a 2006 Georgia Progress Award recipient. You join a select group of schools that recognize the benefits and possibilities of using this systematic approach to continuous improvement."

For more information about the Georgia Oglethorpe Award Process, Inc., visit

PHOTO: Satilla Marsh Elementary School Principal Kathie Matthews accepts the 2006 Georgia Progress Award from Victoria Taylor, executive director of the Georgia Oglethorpe Award Process, and Lonice Barrett from the Governorís Commission for a New Georgia.