Last updated: May 05. 2014 1:24PM - 865 Views
By - ostapleton@newsdemocratleader.com

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Auburn School celebrated its status as a National Blue Ribbon School on Friday with a ceremony that included state education commissioner Terry Holliday and other special guests.

The honor, given out by the U. S. Department of Education, was the second ever for the district. Adairville Elementary was a National Blue Ribbon School in 2001.

“This is a very nice honor and one that is not easily attained,” said Logan County schools superintendent Marshall Kemp. “We try to do the things that will put us on the path to success, especially for the students and this shows just how hard we are working.”

The other four Kentucky schools that received the honor this year are:

· Beechwood High School, Beechwood Ind.

· Glendover Elementary, Fayette County

· Mann Elementary, Boone County

· Star Elementary, Carter County

The Kentucky schools are among the 286 public and private, elementary, middle and high schools across the country recognized this year. There were no private schools in Kentucky named as part of the 2013 cohort of Blue Ribbon Schools.

The national Blue Ribbon Schools program has become a trademark of excellence and a symbol of quality recognized by everyone from parents to policy-makers.

The program recognizes schools in one of two performance categories:

1) Exemplary High Performing Schools — must rank in the top 15 percent in the state on the latest state assessments of reading or English/language arts and mathematics;

2) Exemplary Improving Schools — at least 40 percent of students are from disadvantaged backgrounds and the school scores among the top 10 percent of those in the state with the greatest five year improvement on state assessments of reading or English/language arts and mathematics. A student with a disadvantaged background includes those who are free and reduced-meal eligible, disabled, limited English proficient, migrant or receiving Title I services.

Whether high performing or improving, a school must not have large gaps in achievement among its various student groups.

“Kentucky’s Blue Ribbon schools are leading the way in preparing students to be college/career-ready,” said Education Commissioner Terry Holliday. “Every child deserves a world class education and these schools are models for those in the rest of the state where students are not yet achieving or improving at such a high level.”

Representatives from each of Kentucky’s Blue Ribbon schools will join those from other states at a recognition ceremony in Washington, D.C on Nov. 18-19. In addition, Commissioner Holliday will visit each school over the next several months to offer his congratulations.

“The commissioner is going to visit the school at some point and make that recognition,” Kemp said. “I’m sure we’ll try to do a celebration for the award at that time.”

Since the U. S. Department of Education revamped the Blue Ribbon program in 2003, 45 Kentucky public schools have been designated Blue Ribbon Schools.

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