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CCS Earns Top Awards in Communications

The North Carolina School Public Relations Association (NCSPRA) has honored Cumberland County Schools (CCS) for excellence in communications. CCS earned a total of 12 Blue Ribbon Awards for outstanding and effective communications. NCSPRA presented the awards during a virtual ceremony on February 5, 2021.

 “Although this past year has been one of the most challenging for school communicators, it has also been an opportunity for innovation, creativity and adaptability,” said Lindsay Whitley, CCS associate superintendent for Communications and Community Engagement. “More than ever before, these awards mean so much. I’m extremely proud of the CCS communications team for persevering and continuing to produce excellent work during unprecedented times.”

Gold Awards

  • Electronic Media: 2021 Administrators of the Year Virtual Celebration
  • Electronic Media: CCS Recruitment Video
  • Marketing: Cumberland@Home Marketing Campaign
  • Publications: 2020 State of Education in Cumberland County Schools
  • Special Events & Programs: State of Education in Cumberland County
  • Special Events & Programs: Principal and Assistant Principal of the Year Virtual Celebration
  • Special Events & Programs: 2021 Teacher & Beginning Teacher of the Year Virtual Celebration

Silver Awards

  • Electronic Media: CCS COVID-19 Safety Precautions
  • Special Events & Programs: Coffee Conversations
  • Special Events & Programs: Cumberland County Schools’ 2020 Graduation Media Event

Bronze Awards

  • Excellence in Writing: An Open Letter to the Class of 2020: Hope in the Face of Adversity
  • Special Events & Programs: Cumberland Family Academy

Ken Derksen, NCSPRA President and Communications & Public Relations Officer for Wayne County Public Schools, said the work of the award winners exemplifies the high standards and qualities members demonstrate in their daily school communications programs. "Blue Ribbon Awards are among the highest and most prestigious honors that a member of our organization can attain,” Derksen said. “I congratulate Cumberland County Schools for achieving this statewide recognition as a Blue Ribbon Award winner and for the superior work being accomplished in the area of school communications and public relations.”

During the Blue Ribbon Awards ceremony, State Superintendent Catherine Truitt paid tribute to award winners and thanked all North Carolina school districts for their efforts to effectively communicate during difficult times. Truitt praised the districts and their communications teams for the powerful way they have responded to help parents, students, and staff during the COVID crisis. "You have conquered the digital landscape in order to meet the ever-changing demands of this pandemic,” Truitt shared in her video message. “You have mastered the use of social media channels, video messages, and email sending platforms, and you have remained vigilant in the face of an overwhelming demand for answers. Most importantly you all have been steadfast in your determination to ensure that questions posed by parents and teachers have received the answers they require and deserve.” Truitt called the work of the winners “exceptional,” and thanked them for their dedication and for helping to shape the communications landscape.

NCSPRA recognizes excellence in school communications and public relations in eight categories: digital media engagement, electronic media, excellence in writing, image/graphic design, marketing, photography, publications (print and electronic), and special events and programs. 

NCSPRA is the premier organization for school communications and public relations professionals in North Carolina.  For more information, visit the NCSPRA website, North Carolina School Public Relations Association.