The U. S. Department of Education (USED) has named five Kentucky public schools as 2013 National Blue Ribbon Schools, based on their overall academic excellence or their progress in improving student academic achievement.

The five Kentucky schools are:

  • Auburn Elementary, Logan County
  • Beechwood High School, Beechwood Ind.
  • Glendover Elementary, Fayette County
  • Mann Elementary, Boone County
  • Star Elementary, Carter County

The Kentucky schools are among the 286 public and private, elementary, middle and high schools across the country recognized this year.  There were no private schools in Kentucky named as part of the 2013 cohort of Blue Ribbon Schools.

The national Blue Ribbon Schools program has become a trademark of excellence and a symbol of quality recognized by everyone from parents to policy-makers.

The program recognizes schools in one of two performance categories:

1)    Exemplary High Performing Schools — must rank in the top 15 percent in the state on the latest state assessments of reading or English/language arts and mathematics;

2)    Exemplary Improving Schools — at least 40 percent of students are from disadvantaged backgrounds and the school scores among the top 10 percent of those in the state with the greatest five year improvement on state assessments of reading or English/language arts and mathematics.  A student with a disadvantaged background includes those who are free and reduced-meal eligible, disabled, limited English proficient, migrant or receiving Title I services.

Whether high performing or improving, a school must not have large gaps in achievement among its various student groups.

“Kentucky’s Blue Ribbon schools are leading the way in preparing students to be college/career-ready,” said Education Commissioner Terry Holliday.  “Every child deserves a world class education and these schools are models for those in the rest of the state where students are not yet achieving or improving at such a high level.”

Representatives from each of Kentucky’s Blue Ribbon schools will join those from other states at a recognition ceremony in Washington, D.C on Nov. 18-19. In addition, Commissioner Holliday will visit each school over the next several months to offer his congratulations.

Since USED revamped the Blue Ribbon program in 2003, 45 Kentucky public schools have been designated Blue Ribbon Schools.  More information on the program is available at: