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Niagara Honor Roll / Achievers and achievements

The state Health Department has awarded Niagara County a perfect score for its efforts in emergency preparedness, Niagara County Public Health Director, Daniel Stapleton announced last week.

The announcement followed a review of the county program in late April.

This is the third time the Niagara County Emergency Preparedness Program received high marks for its program performance. The last three annual reviews were conducted alternately by the health department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The following is an excerpt from the 2012 State Review Report received late Thursday:

"Niagara County continues to demonstrate exceptional work in preparedness. The attention to detail and completeness of their plans, attachments and reference materials is a model for other jurisdictions. Further, the County shows dedication to their partners and their customers in their remarkable work at outreach and inclusion of partners in their planning and response activities.

"Niagara County has a unique perspective of preparedness plans and has discovered innovative ways to merge all activities to maximize every response or activity."

Niagara County expects another CDC review in November based on new requirements to be released this month.

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Emmet Belknap Intermediate School in Lockport is the winner of the 2012 Gold Medal Award from Ascend Education.

The Gold Medal Award was established in 2010 to honor the school or district that best demonstrates a dedication to ensuring that all students become successful at math. The Gold Medal nominees all used Ascend Math as their math intervention solution to assist struggling students. The three judges looked at the challenges each nominee faced and the results they achieved to arrive at their decision. School and community support were also taken into consideration.

In her nomination form Lynn Hewitt, school psychologist at Emmet Belknap, wrote "On average students using Ascend had previously made about .5 grade level growth each year. These same students have improved by 1.7 grade levels (on average) over the past months."

Emmet Belknap will be honored at a special reception to take place June 26 at the International Society for Technology in Education Conference in San Diego.

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Niagara Wine Trail wineries were awarded medals at the 31st Annual Riverside International Wine Competition.

A team of 45 judges reviewed wines from 346 classifications during the competition, which took place May 8 to 10.

Three of the Niagara Wine Trail wineries were awarded 11 total medals. This included Arrowhead Spring Vineyard's Sweepstakes Winner -- a combined honor of best dessert wine and chairman's award -- for its 2009 Vidal Ice Wine.

Arrowhead Spring Vineyards was also awarded a gold award for its 2008 Meritage, silver award for its 2010 Syrah, and a bronze for its 2009 Chardonnay. Leonard Oaks Estate Winery was honored with a gold award for its 2009 Vidal Blanc Ice Wine and a silver award for a 2011 Dry Riesling. Schulze Vineyards and Winery also was the recipient of four silver awards: 2011 Siegfried, 2011 Vidal Blanc and Niagara, and 2010 Block Three Ice Wine (Catawba), as well as a bronze award for 2010 RCR (Port).