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Eight North Carolina schools earn National Blue Ribbon Honors

U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos today recognized eight North Carolina schools as National Blue Ribbon Schools for 2018. The recognition is based on a school’s overall academic performance or progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups.

“I’m pleased to celebrate with you as your school is named a National Blue Ribbon School,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos in a video message to the honorees. “We recognize and honor your important work in preparing students for successful careers and meaningful lives. Congratulations on your students’ accomplishments and for your extraordinary commitment to meeting their unique needs.”

The coveted National Blue Ribbon Schools award affirms the hard work of educators, families and communities in creating safe and welcoming schools where students master challenging and engaging content. 

State Superintendent Mark Johnson congratulated North Carolina’s recipients as leaders for schools across the state in demonstrating effective teaching and learning aimed at helping all students achieve the American dream.

“The teachers, other educators and parents in these schools should be proud of this recognition,” Johnson said. “It’s affirmation of all of their efforts to make the classroom experience as meaningful and productive as possible. Well done.”

Now in its 36th year, the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program has bestowed recognition on more than 8,800 schools, including 349 schools honored this year. On November 7 and 8, the Secretary and the Department of Education will celebrate with all honorees at an awards ceremony in Washington, D.C.

All schools are honored in one of two performance categories, based on all student scores, subgroup student scores and graduation rates:

Exemplary High Performing Schools are among their state’s highest performing schools as measured by state assessments or nationally normed tests.

Exemplary Achievement Gap Closing Schools are among their state’s highest performing schools in closing achievement gaps between a school’s subgroups and all students over the past five years.

All eight of North Carolina’s schools recognized this year for the Blue Ribbon designation were selected as Exemplary High Performing Schools.

Up to 420 schools may be nominated each year. The Department invites National Blue Ribbon School nominations from the top education official in all states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, the Department of Defense Education Activity and the Bureau of Indian Education. Private schools are nominated by The Council for American Private Education (CAPE).

North Carolina’s Blue Ribbon Schools for 2018:

       School Name                                                                       School District

  • Clement Elementary School                                            Sampson County Schools
  • Eastover-Central Elementary School of Arts                  Cumberland County Schools
  • Glenn C. Marlow Elementary School                             Henderson County Schools
  • Haywood Early College                                                  Haywood County Schools
  • Kitty Hawk Elementary School                                      Dare County Schools
  • Socrates Academy                                                           Charter school; Matthews
  • The STEM Early College at N.C. A&T                          Guilford County Schools
  • W.J. Gurganus Elementary School                                  Craven County Schools

EdNC staff reporting relies on staff, interns, and columnists.