Skip to content

EdNC. Essential education news. Important stories. Your voice.

National blue ribbons awarded to eight NC public schools

The following is a press release from Public Schools of North Carolina

Eight North Carolina public schools today were named 2016 National Blue Ribbon Schools by U.S. Secretary of Education John B. King Jr. These schools are among 279 public and 50 private schools where students either achieve very high learning standards or are making notable improvements in closing the achievement gap.

North Carolina public schools receiving this prestigious recognition are:

  • Pisgah Elementary, Buncombe County Schools;
  • The Early College at Guilford, Guilford County Schools;
  • Jay M. Robinson Middle, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools;
  • Wrightsville Beach Elementary, New Hanover County Schools;
  • Central Academy of Technology and Arts, Union County Schools;
  • Davis Drive Elementary, Wake County Schools;
  • Morrisville Elementary, Wake County Schools; and
  • Bald Creek Elementary, Yancey County Schools;

“National Blue Ribbon Schools are proof that we can prepare every child for college and meaningful careers,” said U.S. Secretary of Education John B. King Jr. “Your schools are on the cutting edge, pioneering innovative educational practices—professional learning communities, project-based learning, social and emotional learning, positive behavior systems—making you shining examples for your communities, your state and the nation.”

State Superintendent June Atkinson congratulated educators and students at these schools for their receipt of this prestigious award. “In my travels across the state I see first hand how hard our principals, teachers and support staff work to ensure that students excel in the classroom and life. It’s rewarding when those efforts are recognized,” she said.

For the past 34 years, this coveted award has been bestowed to fewer than 8,500 of the nation’s most successful schools. Schools selected model excellence in leadership, teaching, curriculum, student achievement and parental involvement.

National Blue Ribbon Schools are recognized in one of two performance categories, based on all student scores, subgroup student scores and graduation rates:

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

Education officials in all states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, the Department of Defense Education Activity, and the Bureau of Indian Education nominate public schools that meet the rigorous criteria for consideration. Once all nominations are received, the U.S. Secretary of Education invites the nominated schools to submit applications for possible recognition as a National Blue RibbonSchool.

Representatives from each of these schools will be honored at a conference and awards ceremony to be held Nov. 7-8 in Washington, DC. They will receive a plaque and a flag signifying their selection as a National Blue Ribbon School.

Additional information regarding the National Blue Ribbon School program is available online or by contacting NCDPI Communication and Information Services at 919.807.3450.


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