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Dougherty Elementary School Named National Blue Ribbon School by U.S. Dept of Education

September 30, 2015

DUBLIN, CA — Dougherty Elementary School has become the first school in the history of the Dublin Unified School District to earn recognition as a National Blue Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education on Tuesday.

Dougherty was one of 29 California public schools to receive the honor this year, 285 schools were honored nationally. The recognized schools are required to be performing in the top 15 percent of schools statewide as measured by state assessments. Three Alameda County schools were recognized.

James Dougherty Elementary School

2015 National Blue Ribbon School Profile

“We are very proud and honored that Dougherty Elementary School has been named a National Blue Ribbon School,” Superintendent Stephen Hanke said. “Clearly, the district commitment to student learning and the dedication and hard work of our teachers, staff, leadership and parents is reflected in this important award. Congratulations to the Dougherty community on receiving this much deserved recognition.”

The National Blue Ribbon Schools program, which has been in place since 1982, recognizes public and private elementary, middle and high schools based on their overall academic excellence or their progress in closing achievement gaps. In its 33-year history, the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program has presented this award to more than 8,000 of America’s schools.

“The Board is thrilled that Dougherty Elementary is being recognized with such a prestigious national award,” said Board President Amy Miller. “We are proud of all of our great schools in Dublin and this honor for Dougherty is both an affirmation of the dedication of our staff and students, and that we are doing the right things for our students.”

National Blue Ribbon Schools will be honored at a national awards ceremony on November 9-10, 2015 in Washington, D.C., where each winner will receive a plaque and flag. Blue Ribbon winners may fly this flag at their schools as a mark of excellence. Principal Brett Nelson will be traveling to Washington D.C. along with teacher Cindy Neuschwander, who assisted with the application, to receive the Blue Ribbon Award.

“I am so proud of the hard work and commitment to every child and family that our staff models each and every day,” Nelson said. “There is not a more deserving staff of this honor than ours. The rigor and relevance of the lessons are important, of course, but it is the relationships that are fostered between every staff member, from the classroom, to the office to the custodial team that make Dougherty a National Blue Ribbon School.”

U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan recognized 335 schools as National Blue Ribbon Schools for 2015 based on their overall academic excellence or their progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups. These schools demonstrate that all students can achieve to high levels.

“This honor recognizes your students’ accomplishments and the hard work and dedication that went into their success,” Duncan said in a video message to the awardees. “Your journey has taught you collaboration, intentional instruction, and strong relationships in school and with your community. You represent excellence—in vision, in implementation, and in results—and we want to learn as much as we can from you.”

According the U.S. Department of Education, the 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 content.

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