Chelsea Excellence Award: The Nomination Process Explained


Freshman Class Nominees (photo credit:@Chelsea_HS Twitter)  

The shift from the typical Homecoming King and Queen to the Chelsea Excellence Award occurred four years ago to create a better reflection of the district’s Portrait of a Graduate and the qualities the district values. Student Council Advisor, Melissa Taylor, is behind the logistics of the nomination process. 

“I create the nomination forms that get sent to Bulldog Block teachers and get posted around the school,” Taylor said. “From there, I contact the nominees and make sure that they’re willing to accept the nomination. Then I compile some of the things that their classmates said about them in the nomination forms and create the actual voting forms.”

Unlike the traditional Homecoming King and Queen, the Excellence Award recognizes students who represent characteristics that CHS hopes to instill in all of its graduates. 

“It’s a full encompassing of who the student is as a person,” Taylor said. “Not necessarily what we might consider a typical homecoming popularity contest. It’s more about the content of their character.”

The CHS Portrait of a Graduate defines a student’s success in three areas: social, academic, and emotional. Students nominate their peers for the award based on if they exemplify the qualities highlighted in the Portrait of a Graduate. 

“The Excellence Award is meant to bring attention to students who are going above and beyond and represent the key aspects of our school’s Portrait of a Graduate,” Taylor said. “I think what’s super powerful about this is the fact that it’s students recognizing other students.”

Every student has the chance to nominate their peers who they believe deserve recognition using a google form created by the student council.

“We distribute [the survey] to the best of our abilities so that all of the student body can have access to it,” Taylor said. “I send it to Bulldog Block teachers so that they’re able to share it with their class. We also post fliers around the school with those little QR codes so that somebody just passing by in the hallway could scan and access the form.” 

In the voting form, students write a small paragraph describing why they nominated each specific student. They put a lot of time and effort into their responses. 

“I think something really special about the Chelsea Excellence Award is I get to learn more about students that I might know in class by learning how their peers see them,” Taylor said. “It’s not just the four people per grade level who get the nomination. But reading through those responses makes me realize what an amazing place Chelsea is because we have so many students that are doing amazing things.”

During the pep rally and halftime at the homecoming game, the nominees are recognized in several ways. One of which includes having their accomplishments presented to students, staff, and the community of Chelsea.

“Each grade level has four nominees,” explained Taylor. “Each student chooses an escort, typically a parent or guardian. They get all dressed up and walk across the football field. The principal, Dr. Angel, reads out the student’s name, who their escort is, and some of the things that peers have said about that student. So not only does the student get to hear it, but everyone in the crowd gets to hear it.”

All four nominees from each grade are recognized, and ultimately, one winner is chosen from each class.

“We have these excellent award medals and then we decide who the winner is, which is based on student input and vote,” Taylor said. 

After witnessing and being a part of the celebration of Chelsea’s talented students, Taylor encourages students to participate in the Excellence Award process every year. 

“Pay attention to the announcements for homecoming,” Taylor said. “Our goal is always to have as much student involvement as possible, whether or not you’re involved in student council. Make sure you’re nominating Chelsea excellent award winners paying special attention to the quality of the nomination.”