A total of seven schools in the Tri-Valley were recognized as National Blue Ribbon Schools by the U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona on last Friday.
In Pleasanton, Hart Middle School was recognized as a Blue Ribbon School for the first time since it first opened in 2000. According to a news release from the district, receiving this award speaks to "Hart's strong legacy of overall academic performance and closing achievement gaps."
"We are proud to share this National Blue Ribbon distinction with our entire Hart Middle School community," Hart principal Caroline Fields said in the news release. "This award is a testament to the dedication and hard work of our students and staff every day."
In the news release, PUSD Superintendent David Haglund congratulated the school on receiving the national recognition.
"Our entire community should be proud of this award, which speaks to our school's strong legacy of excellence and the world-class education that continues to make Pleasanton Unified a destination district for families," Haglund said.
According to the Department of Education's website, 297 schools received the recognition nationally based on their "overall academic performance or progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups."
The department recognizes all schools in one of two performance categories, based on all student scores, subgroup student scores and graduation rates.
"Exemplary High-Performing Schools" are schools that perform highly on state assessments or nationally normed tests while "Exemplary Achievement Gap-Closing Schools" are ones that excel in closing achievement gaps between a school's student groups and all students.
All the schools in the Tri-Valley, including Hart, were recognized in the Exemplary High-Performing Schools category.
The San Ramon Valley Unified School District alone had four schools recognized -- Coyote Creek Elementary School, Gale Ranch Middle School, Iron Horse Middle School and Windemere Ranch Middle School -- which is more than any other district in the state.
"We are proud of our Blue Ribbon schools who go above and beyond to support our students' success," SRVUSD Superintendent John Malloy said in a news release.
"These schools exemplify everything we stand for in San Ramon Valley Unified School District because their students are effective thinkers, creators, collaborators and communicators who will most definitely make a difference in our world," Malloy added. "We look forward to celebrating these accomplishments in the coming weeks with our schools and communities."
Fallon Middle School and Kolb Elementary School in Dublin were also on the National Blue Ribbon Schools list.
"This recognition highlights the dedication and hard work put in by the staff and students at Kolb and Fallon," DUSD Superintendent Chris Funk said in a news release. "I'd like to congratulate them on this rare achievement. Very few schools in the Tri-Valley have received this recognition in the nearly 40 years it has been around. Our entire community -- not just the Fallon and Kolb communities -- should be very proud of this honor."
All of the Tri-Valley schools will be receiving a National Blue Ribbon flag to fly at the campus.
"I applaud all the honorees for the 2022 National Blue Ribbon Schools Award for creating vibrant, welcoming, and affirming school communities where students can learn, grow, reach their potential, and achieve their dreams," Cardona said in a statement.
"As our country continues to recover from the pandemic, we know that our future will only be as strong as the education we provide to all of our children. Blue Ribbon Schools have gone above and beyond to keep students healthy and safe while meeting their academic, social, emotional, and mental health needs. These schools show what is possible to make an enduring, positive difference in students' lives," he added.