Park Named National Magnet School of Distinction

Park Named National Magnet School of Distinction
Posted on 01/23/2019
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Park Magnet an - IB World School, a part of the Hot Springs School District, has been named a National Magnet School of Distinction by Magnet Schools of America, the national association for magnet and theme-based schools. To receive a national merit award, schools are judged and scored on their demonstrated ability to raise student academic achievement, promote racial and socioeconomic diversity, provide integrated curricula and instruction, and create strong family and community partnerships that enhance the school’s magnet theme.  

The mission of Park Magnet is to engage students in a challenging curriculum that prepares active, compassionate, lifelong learners with a respect for diversity and the tools to compete in a global society. Park Magnet is an IB World School, which means it offers curriculum through the Primary Years Programme (PYP) of the International Baccalaureate (IB) Programme. IB is one of the most prestigious international curriculum frameworks available, and is designed to challenge students to think for themselves and take responsibility for their learning as they explore local and global issues and opportunities in real-life contexts. Park Magnet is among the only schools in Arkansas to offer the inquiry-based teaching style and rigorous curriculum in the PYP.

“When families choose Park Magnet, they are choosing one of the very best educational experiences in Arkansas. Thank you to the Magnet Schools of America for recognizing the hard work by our students and staff,” says Park Principal Dr. Sarah Oatsvall. “Our dedicated staff work so hard to go above and beyond in providing the opportunity for academic excellence, and in helping to develop well-rounded, globally minded students. We deeply appreciate this recognition.”

Earlier this school year, Park Magnet was named the top elementary school in the state for the second year in a row, based on scores released on ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act) by the Arkansas Department of Education. Park Magnet is also a two time National Blue Ribbon School, which represents not only academic excellence, but achievement in schools with a diverse student population, rigorous academic offerings and growth above and beyond state standards, and exemplary staff collaboration.

Presentation of Distinction Award:

Park Principal Dr. Sarah Oatsvall will be recognized and receive a National Magnet School of Distinction Merit Award on behalf of the school during an awards ceremony held at Magnet Schools of America’s 37th National Conference hosted by Baltimore County Public Schools in Baltimore, Maryland April 10-13, 2019.

To learn more about the national merit awards program, please visit

The mission of the Hot Springs School District is to educate and empower each student to graduate from high school college and/or career ready, respect diversity, and to be contributing members of a global society. Learn more at

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