Barbara Prichard, Gifted and Talented and AP Curriculum Director for the Fayetteville Public Schools, was named the 2017 recipient of the AGATE Award of Excellence at the 2017 AGATE Conference in Little Rock. The AGATE Board of Directors bestows this award, when merited, to honor "any person who promotes excellence in education, particularly as it relates to gifted and talented children and youth in Arkansas.” AGATE, or Arkansans for Gifted and Talented Education, is an independent organization promoting excellence in education, particularly as it relates to gifted and talented children and youth in Arkansas.
Barbara’s unwavering commitment to students who are not only high achievers, but meet the high threshold of being served in our nationally-acclaimed program is admired and appreciated, stated Dr. Matthew Wendt, Superintendent of Schools. “She is an incredible leader, advocate, and educator. When people all across the United States think of the Fayetteville Gifted and Talented Program, they accurately attribute it to Barbara.”
Prichard joined Fayetteville Public Schools in 1983 as the Director of Gifted Education. For the past 33 years she has developed a Gifted and Talented Education program that has been named the state’s Outstanding GT Program a record six times.
“I offer my congratulations to Barbara on this much deserved and distinguished award. Personally, I know of no other individual who has done more for GT education policy, advocacy, and its development in Arkansas than Barbara Prichard,” said Dustin Seaton, Awards Chair of AGATE.
In addition to the GT Program, Prichard has developed the district’s Advanced Placement Program from an offering of three courses in 1983 to over 25 currently. Annually, Fayetteville High School has the most Advanced Placement Scholars in the state.
“I am both humbled and honored by this award. At the same time it should be shared with past and present Fayetteville Board of Education members whose vision for gifted education programs preceded state legislation that established gifted education in all Arkansas schools,” said Prichard. “This award also is a tribute to the many GT teachers, classroom teachers, administrators, bus drivers, and all our professional service staff. Every FPS employee's dedication to serve all of our varied and diverse students with their individual needs is a testimony to our district's dedication to excellence.”
On average, about 950 students receive services in the FPS Gifted and Talented Program.