Lafayette Principal Scores National Award

Posted: Updated:

A Lafayette school principal has received a national honor from the U.S. Department of Education. Janelle Uerkwitz from Murdock Elementary is one of seven winners of the Terrel H. Bell Award for Outstanding School Leadership.

The honorees were selected from the pool of 2015 National Blue Ribbon Schools, of which Indiana had 10.

Outstanding School Leadership award winners will be honored during a ceremony November 9 in Washington, D.C. The award is a collaboration among the U.S. Department of Education, National Association of Elementary School Principals, the Association for Middle Level Education and the National Association of Secondary School Principals.

A DOE biography lists initiatives and accomplishments by the school during Uerkwitz time at the helm, including helping to turn around a school in danger of state takeover into an "A" rated school, implementing an academic calendar, school uniforms and standardized test scores above other schools in the district.

This year's award recipients are:

Jon Cerny, Bancroft-Rosalie Elementary School, Bancroft, Nebraska

Edna Coia, Francis J. Varieur School, Pawtucket, Rhode Island

James Heater, Esther F. Garrison School of Visual and Performing Arts, Savannah, Georgia

Rosalba De Hoyos, Achieve Early College High School, McAllen, Texas

Heidi Smith, Frank L. Huff Elementary School, Mountain View, California

Irma Trosclair, South Crowley Elementary School, Crowley, Louisiana

Janell Uerkwitz, Murdock Elementary School, Lafayette, Indiana

The award is named for the second Secretary of Education.

  • Perspectives

    • The First Thing Nonprofit Boards Should Focus On: Member Engagement

      There is no shortage of literature on how to run a nonprofit and what the board of directors should be doing. Do a quick search for “grant writing advice” or “board meeting agenda” and you will easily find hundreds of resources. But if there is so much helpful information around, why is serving on a nonprofit board sometimes so draining? After founding two nonprofits, Musical Family Tree and the Speak Easy, as well as serving on several nonprofit boards...

  • Most Popular Stories

    • (photo courtesy The Times of Northwest Indiana)

      Hammond Pulls 135 Jobs from Illinois

      A Hammond factory recently vacated by Michigan-based Lear Corp. didn’t sit empty for very long. Midland Metal Products has taken over the former seat factory, having relocated from Chicago after 95 years. 

    • (photo courtesy of TriCore Logic)

      Fort Wayne IT Firm Expanding

      TriCore Logic has announced plans to expand its office space and staff at its downtown Fort Wayne headquarters. The company plans to invest over $200,000 in the expansions. The 2010-founded company moved to the Anthony Wayne building in 2013, and now plan to grow their staff of five employees by up to eight over the next four years. 

    • (courtesy Wes Mills)

      Purdue: Farmland Values Decline Fifth Straight Year

      The value of top-quality farmland in Indiana has declined continuing a five-year trend, according to the latest data from Purdue University.  The statewide average of the best cropland is $8,212 per acre, down more than five percent, or $456 per acre, from the same period last year. Purdue’s survey shows average and poor-quality farmland values also dropped, but not as much. Average quality farmland declined by 0.9 percent. Purdue says the poor...

    • ‘Transformation’ Continues in Westfield

      Indiana’s fastest growing city is showing no signs of slowing down.  Mayor Andy Cook says now that Westfield has established itself as a destination for family sports with the Grand Park Sports Campus, the $35 million Grand Junction Plaza will transform the city’s downtown into a destination, a place “where people want to be.”   Cook says the project, more than a decade in the making, is an example of a place making strategy necessary for Midwest...
    • Elanco is headquartered in Greenfield.

      Elanco to Acquire Bayer AG Animal Health Business

      Greenfield-based Elanco Animal Health Inc. (NYSE: ELAN) has entered into an agreement with Bayer AG (ETR: BAYN) to acquire its animal health business in a deal valued at $7.6 billion. If approved, it would double Elanco’s Companion Animal business and create the second-largest animal health company by revenue. “Joining Elanco and Bayer Animal Health strengthens and accelerates our IPP strategy, transforms our portfolio with the addition of well-known pet brands, brings...