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Three RI Schools Receive National Blue Ribbon Awards

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – The U.S. Department of Education today announced three Rhode Island schools as National Blue Ribbon Schools for 2017, based on their overall academic excellence or their progress in closing achievement gaps.

The schools receiving this honor are Classical High School in Providence, Community Elementary School in Cumberland, and Fishing Cove Elementary School in North Kingstown.

“Providing challenging, high-quality, and engaging learning experiences is what our public schools are called upon to do, and our Blue Ribbon Schools set the bar high,” said Governor Gina M. Raimondo. “Our success as a state, economically and otherwise, relies on education, and our Blue Ribbon Schools serve as a model for how we can improve outcomes for all schools and all students. Congratulations to these school communities on this exciting achievement.”

“Being recognized as a Blue Ribbon School is a tremendous accomplishment. It takes strong leadership, dedicated educators, hard-working students, and a school culture that inspires excellence,” said Barbara S. Cottam, Chair of the Board of Education. “Thank you to Classical, Community, and Fishing Cove Schools for your commitment to great teaching and learning.”

“It is no small feat what these schools have accomplished, and I want to offer my sincerest congratulations to the students, families, and educators at each of our newest Blue Ribbon Schools,” said Daniel P. McConaghy, Chair of the Council on Elementary and Secondary Education. “This distinction puts you in an elite group of high-performing schools across the nation, and I look forward to seeing your continued hard work, creativity, and exemplary performance.”

“This level of achievement requires incredible commitment at every level, from the school and district leaders to the classroom teachers and to the families supporting students at home. Each has a role to play in supporting student success and closing achievement gaps, and each has contributed to this distinction,” said Ken Wagner, Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education. “I am so proud of our winners, and I wish them continued success as leaders in education.”

According to the U.S. Department of Education, the National Blue Ribbon Schools program honors public and private elementary, middle, and high schools where students either achieve very high learning standards, or are making notable improvements in closing the achievement gap. Classical High School and Community Elementary School were designated as Exemplary High Performing Schools, and Fishing Cove was designated as an Exemplary Achievement Gap Closing School.

Now in its 35th year, the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program has recognized more than 8,500 schools. This year’s honorees will be celebrated at an awards ceremony in Washington, D.C., on November 6 and 7.