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Press Release: Six Maryland Public Schools Named 2016 State Blue Ribbon Honorees

Program Spotlights High Achievement, Improvement

For Immediate Release                                       Contact: Bill Reinhard, 410-767-0486

Baltimore, MD (December 14, 2015)

Six Maryland public schools today were selected as 2016 Maryland Blue Ribbon Schools.

The schools are:

  • Arnold Elementary School, Anne Arundel County
  • Pasadena Elementary School, Anne Arundel County
  • George Washington Carver Center for Arts & Technology, Baltimore County
  • Hereford High School, Baltimore County
  • North Harford Elementary School, Harford County
  • White Marsh Elementary School, St. Mary’s County

“Every child deserves a world-class education and each of these schools goes the extra mile to provide students the best learning experience possible, and we applaud their faculty and staff,” said Governor Larry Hogan. “By providing students with a quality education, we are preparing students to become productive members of Maryland’s workforce and our society as a whole.”

Interim State Superintendent of Schools Jack Smith added his congratulations. 

“The Maryland Blue Ribbon Schools represent the outstanding accomplishments of public schools throughout our State,” Dr. Smith said. “The students, teachers, administrators, and communities work together to make these schools something special, and they deserve recognition and celebration.”

The schools are recognized on the basis of rigorous State and national requirements for high achievement and significant improvement. The students in each of these schools are high achievers in reading and mathematics, and several of these schools also serve a significant number of economically disadvantaged students and students for whom English is a second language.

The schools will be invited by the U.S. Department of Education to apply to be National Blue Ribbon Schools.  With underwriting and gift sponsors, each school will receive a Maryland Blue Ribbon Flag, a $2000 monetary prize, $1000 of office supplies, interactive technology equipment, and a school Congratulations Party.  Underwriting sponsors include BGE, Comcast, Dimension U, Mrs. Fields, NTA Life, Rudolph’s Office Supply, SMART Technologies, and State Farm Insurance.  A dinner in Annapolis will be held in honor of the winning schools this coming spring, as each Blue Ribbon School will be honored by the Maryland House of Delegates and the Senate.


2015-2016 Maryland Blue Ribbon Schools

Anne Arundel County Public Schools

Arnold Elementary, an arts integration school, emphasizes strategies to develop critical and inquiry thinking along with knowledge of art standards. Its Visiting Artists program brings resident artists to the school.  It is also a Wellness School of Distinction since 2011 and an AVID school. Partnerships with Master Gardeners of Maryland, and the HEROS Running Program provided a mediation garden, outdoor learning classrooms, and health and fitness programs.  One of only 20 schools nationwide, it won a 2015 Crayola Grant Award, which supports its innovative art programs. A Professional Development School for Notre Dame of Maryland, Arnold also is applauded for very high overall math and reading proficiency during the past MSA administration.

Pasadena Elementary School is cited for very high overall math and reading proficiency during the past MSA administration.  A diverse school, it serves as a regional site for students with autism and is also a site for Kennedy Krieger Type II instruction in grades K-1.  It is a Maryland Green School and the 2015 Anne Arundel County Wellness School of Distinction.  Pasadena has technology access in every classroom and is proud of its 100 percent Highly Qualified Teachers who also serve as mentors to local high school student interns and volunteers. Support from the community business association and local retailers is enabling Pasadena Elementary to construct an outdoor classroom space and purchase additional technology resources.

Baltimore County Public Schools

George Washington Carver Center for Arts and Technology is a diverse magnet school with previous test data that includes a 100 percent graduation rate, 99 percent proficiencies on state math and reading assessments. The Class of 2015 garnered more than $13 million dollars in awards and scholarships. This past year, 258 students took 508 AP exams with 89 percent scoring a 3, 4, or 5. It is a National Magnet School of Distinction, was named Newsweek Magazine’s Top 5 percent of the nation’s schools for the last ten years, and one of the top visual arts programs in the country by the National Foundation for the Advancement of the Arts.  The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts also named Carver as the National School of Distinction in Arts Education.

Hereford High School has an average graduation rate of 97 percent from 2011- 2015 with 92 percent of students attending college in 2015 while receiving $16.5 million in scholarships.  The School was awarded the Baltimore County High School Achievement Award and is ranked #1 as Baltimore County’s Comprehensive High School according to graduation rates. It is ranked #12 in the State of Maryland by U.S. News & World Report winning Gold Medal Status. The Washington Post named it one of the Top 50 Most Challenging High Schools in Maryland.  In 2015, 1058 AP exams were given to 505 students with a pass rate of over 77 percent.  SAT scores are well over the district’s mean scores with participation rates of 97 percent of its students.

Harford County Public Schools

North Harford Elementary School is a 2014 Maryland Green School and developed a Monarch Waystation that significantly increased the population of caterpillars and adult butterflies.  Co-teaching addresses differentiated student needs.  Afterschool programs are recognized as very innovative. The 5th grade STEM club works with robotics, pneumatics, and hydraulics.  The 4th grade program integrates critical math thinking with physical fitness and well-being.  Attendance consistently exceeds 95% and the school is also applauded for high overall math and reading proficiency during the past MSA administration.  The school’s partnership with area high school students provides science and cultural arts activities.

St. Mary’s County Public Schools

White Marsh Elementary has had high performance in math and reading proficiency during past MSA administrations with 3rd and 4th grades outperforming the state average on reading and math every year from 2003 – 2014 and 5th grades outperforming the state average on math from 2004 – 2014 and in Science from 2008 – 2015.  The school has held 5 consecutive years of Science Fairs, with all students in 3-5 participating and at least 15 or more K-2 students doing projects voluntarily.  This Maryland Green School employs vertical team scoring of assessments so that teachers see the progression of student learning. Community partnerships support the school’s Destination Imagination Program and its Future Leaders of the World mentoring program.