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    Richard Vespucci   
    Kathryn Forsyth, Director

For Release: October 31, 2005

Acting Commissioner Davy Congratulates New Jersey’s Four Blue Ribbon Schools

Representatives from four New Jersey schools are preparing to travel to Washington on November 10-11 for special honors from the United States Department of Education (USDOE).  The schools are New Jersey’s Blue Ribbon Schools for 2005 in the federal No Child Left Behind – Blue Ribbon Schools program.

New Jersey’s Blue Ribbon Schools for 2005 are:

    • Parkway Elementary School in Mt. Laurel;
    • St. Vincent Martyr School in Madison;
    • Tenafly High School in Tenafly; and
    • Sea Girt Elementary School in Sea Girt.

“It is not every day that a school is singled out for national recognition and for successfully moving toward closing the achievement gap,” said Acting Commissioner of Education Lucille E. Davy.  “This award is given only to public and private schools that have demonstrated significant progress in student achievement or are in the top 10 percent of state assessment.”

Established in 1982, the Blue Ribbon Schools program honors public and private schools that are either academically superior in their states or that demonstrate dramatic gains in student achievement.

The program requires schools to meet either of two assessment criteria.  It recognizes schools that enroll at least 40 percent of their students from disadvantaged backgrounds that show dramatic improvement in achievement as measured by state assessments; and it rewards schools that score in the top 10 percent on state assessments.  Of the schools submitted by each state, at least one-third must meet the criterion of having 40 percent of the students from disadvantaged backgrounds.

This year, 295 schools were selected throughout the nation for Blue Ribbon recognition.