The U.S. Department of Education is honoring the winners of 2022’s National Blue Ribbon School Awards, recognizing a total of 297 U.S. schools for their exemplary test performances or efforts to close achievement gaps between students.
Eight Missouri schools and three Kansas schools — including three in the Kansas City area — received national recognition.
Here in the KC area, Chapel Lakes Elementary in the Blue Springs School District, Epic Elementary in the Liberty School District and Dewey Elementary in the Chillicothe School District made the list.
Here’s a breakdown of all Missouri and Kansas schools:
- Chillicothe – Dewey Elementary School, Chillicothe R-II School District
- Jefferson City – Blair Oaks Elementary School, Blair Oaks R-II School District
- Kirkwood – Kirkwood Sr. High School, Kirkwood School District R-VII
- Lee’s Summit – Chapel Lakes Elementary School, Blue Springs R-IV School District
- Liberty – Epic Elementary School, Liberty 53 School District
- Nixa – Nixa High School, Nixa Public School District
- Springfield – Immaculate Conception School, Springfield Catholic School District
- Webb City – Eugene Field Elementary School, Webb City R-VII School District
- Andover – Cottonwood Elementary School, Unified School District 385
- Fort Riley – Morris Hill Elementary School, Geary County School District
- Sedgwick – R.L. Wright Elementary School, Sedgwick Public Schools USD 439
“I applaud all the honorees for the 2022 National Blue Ribbon Schools Award for creating vibrant, welcoming, and affirming school communities where students can learn, grow, reach their potential, and achieve their dreams,” Miguel Cardona, the U.S. Secretary of Education, said in a press release issued by the Department of Education on Thursday.
“As our country continues to recover from the pandemic, we know that our future will only be as strong as the education we provide to all of our children.”
Cardona added that 2022’s honorees had all gone “above and beyond” to keep students safe while making a “positive difference in students’ lives.”
Created in 1982, the National Blue Ribbon School Program recognizes public, parochial and private learning facilities from across the country, as nominated by the chief educational officers in each state (for public schools) or the Council for American Private Education (for private or parochial schools).
Schools can be recognized for a Blue Ribbon School Award in one of two performance categories: high achievement as measured “by state assessments or nationally normed tests,” and greatest advancements in closing achievement gaps.
This year, schools from 45 different states as well as DC and the Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) were recognized: 273 public schools and 24 parochial and private. Texas boasted the most Blue Ribbon Schools with a total of 31, followed by California (29), New York (20), Illinois (17) and Ohio (13).
A complete list of 2022’s winners can be found at the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program website.
Five states did not participate in the Blue Ribbon awards, including Idaho, Maine, Maryland, Oregon and Vermont, the latter two of which have not participated since 1998 and 1994, respectively. Schools in all U.S. territories and those under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) are eligible for consideration. Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the BIE also did not participate in 2022.
The National Blue Ribbon Schools Program, an initiative of the U.S. Department of Education, has issued approximately 10,000 Blue Ribbon School Awards to over 9,000 different schools since its inception.
In order to qualify for an award, schools must meet the wide set of requirements set forth by the Education Department before being submitted for consideration by a state official. Up to 421 schools may be nominated in a given year, including 50 total private schools. In addition, a school can only be nominated once within a five-year period, per the program’s official rules.