NEW HANOVER COUNTY — A local public school was among eight in the state to earn the 2023 National Blue Ribbon Schools award from U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona.
Heyward C. Bellamy Elementary School in New Hanover County was recognized for its overall academic performance or progress in closing achievement gaps.
All Blue Ribbon schools are honored in one of two performance categories, based on all student scores, subgroup student scores and graduation rates:
- Exemplary High Performing Schools are among their state’s highest performing schools as measured by state assessments or nationally normed tests
- Exemplary Achievement Gap Closing Schools are among their state’s highest performing schools in closing achievement gaps between a school’s subgroups and all students over the past five years
According to 2022-2023 data from the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, Bellamy Elementary scored a B grade and exceeded growth expectations.
Bellamy Elementary joins the following North Carolina schools among the 353 institutions awarded across the nation:
- Beaufort County Early College High School, Beaufort County Schools
- Fairview Elementary School, Buncombe County Schools
- Greensboro Academy, Greensboro
- Highland School of Technology, Gaston County Schools
- Jay M. Robinson Middle School, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools
- Lucama Elementary School, Wilson County Schools
- R. Odell Elementary School, Cabarrus County Schools
“The honorees for our 2023 National Blue Ribbon Schools Award have set a national example for what it means to Raise the Bar in education,” Cardona said in a press release. “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.”
The coveted National Blue Ribbon School award affirms the hard work of students, educators, families, and communities in creating safe and welcoming schools where students master challenging and engaging content. They serve as models of effective school practices for state and district educators and other schools across the nation.
Now in its 40th year, the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program has conferred approximately 10,000 awards to more than 9,000 schools, with some schools winning multiple awards. In North Carolina, a total of 138 public schools have been recognized as Blue Ribbon schools since the program’s inception in 1982.
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