The Oklahoma State School of Character Review Team and the Character Council of Oklahoma have selected Sadler Arts Academy as a 2014 Oklahoma School of Character. The school is now in consideration for a National School of Character award from the Character Education Partnership.
Sadler Prinicpal Ronia Davison wrote this in the application, which greatly impressed the review team, according to the letter sent to the school announcing the honor:
"In 1996, with the dubious distinction of the worst test scores in Muskogee, old Sadler Elementary closed its doors. Sadler’s students had the reputation of being the rowdiest and rudest kids in town. Wanting to make a difference, a new staff researched and began to see the inextricable link between caring and cognition realizing that the arts were the perfect venue. The faculties’touchstone became “The Art of Caring” upholding the belief that education has two intertwined purposes: the development of critical intelligence and the nurturance of the human capacity to care. The staff refined the vision to include four core beliefs: The arts are intellectual disciplines of substance deserving center stage in the classroom; All students are gifted and talented; An inclusion environment is best; All should be kind to each other, tenderhearted, and forgiving. The Art of Caring has changed the lives of children and their parents, and the teachers who teach them. Visitors touring the building immediately sense a difference in the school climate. “Strong core beliefs!” is our resounding answer! As a result of our touchstone, Sadler logged the biggest test score gain in the state, its first year and continues to do so. Sadler has been a success story in every way. Our students are engaged in service learning, use good character and have few incidences of bullying. Our attendance rate is the highest in the district. The new Sadler Arts Academy opened its doors as a place like no other!"
Muskogee Public Schools is proud of Sadler Arts Academy, its students, staff and teachers, as well as our other highly honored schools Muskogee High School and Rougher Alternative Academy, both state and national Schools of Character.
"Your school will now serve as a model of excellence throughout Oklahoma for character education best practices as part of the state-wide network of Schools of Character. Your city could not be more proud!" ~ Vice Mayor of Muskogee David Jones.
"I'm proud to share a state and a district with such invested, dedicated students. Thank you for cultivating their bright talents. Keep up the good work!" ~ Congressman Markwayne Mullin.
"This award is for you! You are the first kindergarten through eighth-grade school in Oklahoma to receive this award, and you should all be proud of yourselves." ~ State Rep. Jerry McPeak to the students of Sadler Arts Academy.