By Ann Bush
TOPEKA, Kan. – Three Kansas schools have been designated 2022 National Blue Ribbon Schools, U.S. Secretary of Education Dr. Miguel Cardona announced Friday, Sept. 16.
The recognition is based on a school’s overall academic performance or progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups. The National Blue Ribbon School award affirms the hard work of educators, families and communities in creating safe and welcoming schools, according to the U.S. Department of Education in Washington, D.C.
There were 297 schools across the country designated as 2022 National Blue Ribbon Schools, including the three in Kansas.
Kansas schools that received the designation are Cottonwood Elementary School, Andover Unified School District 385; Morris Hill Elementary, Geary County USD 475; and R.L. Wright Elementary School, Sedgwick USD 439.
The Blue Ribbon program recognizes public and private elementary, middle and high schools in one of two performance categories: Exemplary High Performing and Exemplary Achievement Gap Closing.
Exemplary Achievement Gap Closing Schools are among the state’s highest performing schools in closing achievement gaps between a school’s subgroups and all students.
In the high-performing category, schools are recognized for being among the state’s highest-performing schools as measured by state assessments or nationally normed tests.
All Kansas schools were recognized in the Exemplary High Performing Schools category.
Now in its 39th year, the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program has bestowed about 10,000 awards to more than 9,000 schools, with some schools winning multiple awards.
The U.S. Department of Education 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. The Council for American Private Education (CAPE) nominates private schools. Up to 420 public and private schools may be nominated each year.