NEW JERSEY — Nine schools in New Jersey were among about 350 nationwide named Tuesday as National Blue Ribbon Schools for 2023 by the U.S. Department of Education.
Schools received the designation based on overall academic performance or progress in closing achievement gaps among student groups on assessments, the education department said in a news release.
Dr. Angelica Allen-McMillan, Acting Commissioner of Education for New Jersey, said this recognition "affirms the dedication of our educators, the resilience of our students, and the support of our communities."
“It highlights New Jersey's commitment to excellence in education and showcases the exceptional work happening in our schools," she said.
Here are the honorees from New Jersey:
Luther Lee Emerson School, Demarest SD (Bergen Co.)
Washington Irving School #4, Garfield Public SD (Bergen Co.)
J. Fithian Tatem School, Haddonfield SD (Camden Co.)
Technology High School, Newark Public SD (Essex Co.)
Princeton Charter School (Mercer Co.)
Claremont Avenue Elementary School, Woodbridge Township SD (Middlesex Co.)
High Technology High School, Monmouth County Vocational SD(Monmouth Co.)
Hilltop School, Mendham Borough SD (Morris Co.)
Oak Street School, Bernards Township SD (Somerset Co.)
"These National Blue Ribbon schools serve as shining examples of what is possible when we prioritize innovation, inclusivity, and a rigorous pursuit of academic excellence," said Allen-McMillan. "We are immensely proud of their accomplishments and their contribution to the future success of our state.”
Miguel Cardona, the secretary of education, said the schools set a “national example” for what it means to raise the bar in education.
“The leaders, educators, and staff at our National Blue Ribbon Schools continually inspire me with their dedication to fostering academic excellence and building positive school cultures that support students of all backgrounds to thrive academically, socially, and emotionally,” Cardona said.
This is the 40th year of the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program. About 10,000 awards have been handed out to more than 9,700 schools in that time.
Schools that receive the honor share certain characteristics, the education department said. School leaders share their vision of excellence and hold everyone to high standards.
Additionally, the Department said these schools are effective, innovative, and value and support teachers and staff with professional learning. The schools also use data to drive instruction, and students strive for success.
The Department recognizes all schools in one of two categories, based on student scores and graduation rates:
Exemplary High-Performing Schools: These are among the state’s highest performing schools, measured by state assessments or nationally normed tests.
Exemplary Achievement Gap-Closing Schools: These are among the state’s highest performing schools in closing achievement gaps between a school’s student groups and all students.