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Critizer Elementary School Principal Mr. Tony Viers was recently informed that his school has been recognized by a state literacy group for their efforts in improve literacy rates.


A letter was received by the school from Mrs. Katie Bondurant, Chair for the New River Valley Chapter of the Virginia State Literacy Association. Attached below is that letter.


Dear Mr. Viers,

Local chapters of the Virginia State Literacy Association (VSLA) are challenged to select an elementary, middle, or high school each year that promotes best practices and fosters literacy achievement.  To find this year’s recipient, the New River Valley Chapter (NRVC) encouraged members to showcase their school’s literacy practices.  NRVC members work in Bland, Carroll, Floyd, Giles, Montgomery, Patrick, and Pulaski counties as well as the cities of Radford and Galax.  With great pleasure, I announce that the New River Valley Chapter has selected Critzer Elementary School as the recipient of our 2024 Exemplary Reading Award.

Pulaski County Public Schools’ Coordinator of Elementary Education and NRVC member Tonia Singleton wrote this year’s winning application.  She shared that the Critzer Elementary Literacy Team “stays abreast of all the new VLA initiatives and how those will impact the instruction of students, particularly grades K-3. They carefully analyze the data among their school, as well as the division, and the state, to look at trends and how best to support student growth.”

When asked what sets Critzer Elementary apart from other schools, Mrs. Singleton stated, “Critzer is set apart from others in the way in which they've improved their literacy rates and their SOL scores, in order to pull themselves out of school improvement. The literacy team at CES keeps strong data that is powerful in supporting students, particularly when students may struggle to meet literacy benchmarks. These teachers work tirelessly to implement reading instruction that is built on research and best practices.”

As winners of the New River Valley Exemplary Reading Award, Critzer Elementary will receive a winner’s basket as well as a monetary award to continue furthering literacy education at Critzer. Critzer Elementary will also be recommended for the state Exemplary Reading Award. The winning school of that award receives $500 and will be recognized with a plaque or certificate at the VSLA conference in March 2025. To apply for this award, please use this link: https://vslatoday.org/Award-Applications

The New River Valley Chapter congratulates PCPS and Critzer Elementary for being a leader in the advancement of literacy in the state of Virginia!  A PCPS member of our board will reach out to you to set up a time for the award reception. 


Katie Bondurant, NRVC Grants and Awards Chair