The Edmond Sun

Education

September 11, 2012

Santa Fe High School earns 'Blue Ribbon'

EDMOND — Edmond’s Santa Fe High School is one of six Oklahoma schools to be named a 2012 National Blue Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education.

State Superintendent Janet Barresi on Friday announced six Oklahoma schools had been designated as Blue Ribbon Schools. The schools are among 269 national Blue Ribbon Schools.

“I want to offer my congratulations to the students, educators and parents at each of these schools who have put in so much work to achieve this designation,” Barresi said. “This is a sign that the students in these schools are truly being prepared for a future of college, career and citizenship. They are examples of excellence to the entire state.”

U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said the recognition is based on the overall academic excellence of the schools or for making progress in improving student academic achievement levels and the schools will be honored at a recognition ceremony Nov. 12-13 in Washington, D.C.  

Santa Fe is the 10th Edmond school to receive this designation, the most of any school district in Oklahoma.

“We are so pleased to receive this prestigious honor,” said Superintendent David Goin in a release issued by Edmond Public Schools. “Recognition of this significance is only possible when students, parents, teachers, administrators and staff members work together relentlessly in pursuit of academic excellence.”

Blue Ribbon schools do not receive a monetary award but are recognized for effective teaching.

“In the short time I have been here I have witnessed an incredible commitment to academic rigor on the part of students and staff,” said Jason Hayes, who became principal of Santa Fe this past July. The EPS press release went on to state, “This award is shared with the principals and other administrators who came before me and laid the ground work to improve on the school’s strengths, highlight its uniqueness and commit to an unwavering expectation of excellence.”

Santa Fe was nominated for the award by the Oklahoma Department of Education and compiled a lengthy application during the 2011-12 school year, which included test score data, a summary of the school’s strengths, successful academic strategies and the professional development program for teachers.

To qualify for this award, Santa Fe had to meet the federal Adequate Yearly Progress benchmark for three straight years in addition to ranking among the state’s highest performance levels as measured on state assessments in both reading/language arts and mathematics, according to a release issued by Gloria Bayouth, executive director with the National Department of Education.

“To now have all three high schools in our district receive this recognition is just phenomenal,” Goin said. “It demonstrates the overall integrity of Edmond Public Schools’ academic and instructional programs.”

Edmond’s 10 Blue Ribbon Schools are Santa Fe, Memorial and North high schools, Central, Cimarron, Sequoyah, Summit and Cheyenne middle schools and Northern Hills and Russell Dougherty elementary schools. Earl Kirkpatrick was Santa Fe’s principal in 2011-12, preceded by Jason Brown, who is now an EPS administrator.

A COMPLETE list of the 2012 National Blue Ribbon Schools is available at www.ed.gov/nationalblueribbonschools.

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