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NEWS RELEASES 2001-02

NEWS RELEASES 2001-02 :: DECEMBER 5, 2001

COMMISSION ADVOCATES FUNDEMENTAL CHANGES TO CLOSE THE ACHIEVEMENT GAPS

For North Carolina, 13 could be a lucky number as this is the number of schools the state has recommended to receive the prestigious national Blue Ribbon Award. Four middle schools, one junior high school and eight high schools from across the state have demonstrated a strong commitment to educational excellence and are nominated for a Blue Ribbon for their efforts. Now it's up to a national review panel to decide the winners.

For the past 19 years, the U.S. Department of Education has recognized many of the nation's most successful schools through its Blue Ribbon Schools program. Schools selected for this prestigious award model excellence and equity and exhibit a strong commitment to educational excellence for all students.

Donna Maye, principal of 2000-01 Blue Ribbon Award recipient Unionville Elementary School (Union County Schools), found the Blue Ribbon application process rigorous yet enlightening. "Applying for a Blue Ribbon Award provides a great way to celebrate all that is good, meaningful and helpful to students that is going on at your school. It affirms that you are doing an enormous amount for students and, at the same time, helps you see the areas where you need to increase services to students."

The following public schools have been nominated by the N.C. Department of Public Instruction for the 2001-02 award:

  • A.C. Reynolds High, Buncombe County Schools
  • Freedom High, Burke County Schools
  • South Caldwell High, Caldwell County Schools
  • East Chapel Hill High, Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools
  • Seventy-First Middle, Cumberland County Schools
  • First Flight Middle, Dare County Schools
  • Triton High, Harnett County Schools
  • South Charlotte Middle, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools
  • Emsley A. Laney High, New Hanover County Schools
  • Hamlet Junior High, Richmond County Schools
  • Cary High, Wake County Schools
  • Eastern Wayne High, Wayne County Schools
  • Springfield Middle, Wilson County Schools

The U.S. Department of Education has established a national review panel of public and private school educators to review each school's nominations package and recommend which schools should receive a two-day site visit. Site visitors will verify the accuracy of the information in the nomination package and obtain answers to specific questions the review panel may have. The panel will use the combined information to recommend the 2001-02 Blue Ribbon Schools.

The Blue Ribbon Schools Award Program was started in 1982 to identify and recognize outstanding public and private schools across the nation; establish a framework of criteria which schools could use for self-assessment and improvement; and provide a forum to share best practices. Elementary and secondary schools are eligible to participate in alternate years. To date, almost 3,400 public schools have received this award representing the full spectrum of learning environments.

For additional information regarding the Blue Ribbon Schools Program, please contact Pat Wilkins, NC DPI, 919.807.3953.

About the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction:
The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction provides leadership to 115 local public school districts and 126 charter schools serving over 1.5 million students in kindergarten through high school graduation. The agency is responsible for all aspects of the state's public school system and works under the direction of the North Carolina State Board of Education.


For more information:
NCDPI Communication and Information Division, 919.807.3450.