Chattanooga Center for Creative Arts has won another national award.  The performing arts middle/high school has earned numerous honors during the past decade for its achievements, programs, administrators, and staff members.  Here are details on the 2018 National Magnet School of Excellence Merit Award:

The Chattanooga Center for Creative Arts (CCA) offers students in grades six through 12 an opportunity to explore their unique gifts and talents while also excelling in academics.  CCA students have performed with national touring company productions of Porgy and Bess and Barry Manilow.  The school offers programs in communications, music, dance, theatre and visual arts. Damon Gillespie, a graduate of Chattanooga Center for Creative Arts, is one of the stars of the new NBC television show “RISE.”   

“The award from Magnet Schools of America is a reflection of the united commitment and shared ideals by all members of our school family,” said Debbie Smith, principal at Chattanooga High School Center for Creative Arts.  “Our vision of passion, acceptance, creativity, and excellence is supported by the guideposts that govern this national organization for all magnet schools.”


The school will be recognized and receive a National Magnet School of Excellence Merit Award during an awards ceremony held at Magnet Schools of America’s 36th National Conference hosted by Chicago Public Schools in Chicago, Illinois April 25-29, 2018.

The Magnet School of Excellence Award is given only to a select group of magnet schools. Schools selected for the honor are eligible to receive monetary awards and to be named the nation’s top Elementary, Secondary, or New & Emerging Magnet School. One of the Schools of Excellence will also be selected to win $5,000 and the Dr. Ronald P. Simpson Distinguished Merit Award, which is considered the most prestigious magnet school award in the nation.

“I am proud of our staff, students, and our families for their true commitment to excellence in both arts and academics,” Smith said. “We all share this award, which unites our beliefs as an artistic community of learners.”

Members of Magnet Schools of America must submit a detailed application for the award that is scored by a panel of educators. The 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.