Lake Elementary School has been named a 2011 National Blue Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education.

Lake Elementary School has been named a 2011 National Blue Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education. 225 public and 49 private schools across the nation received the award, which is based upon high levels of achievement or for success in closing the achievement gap.

The Blue Ribbon Schools Program was begun under President Ronald Reagan by Terrel H. Bell, Secretary of Education who penned A Nation at Risk after studying education in the United States.

The program was designed to encourage schools to increase performance, with three purposes: to honor and bring public attention to American schools that achieve high academic standards or have shown significant academic improvement over five years; to make available a comprehensive framework of key criteria for school effectiveness that can serve as a basis for participatory self-assessment and planning in schools; to facilitate communication and sharing of best practices within and among schools based on a common understanding of criteria related to success.

Of the country’s 138,000 public schools, only 6,500 schools have received this award since 1982. Public schools are nominated by the Chief State School Officers and by officials at the Department of Defense Education Activity and the Bureau of Indian Education. Private schools are nominated by the Council for American Private Education. The number of possible applicants from each state is based on the number of schools and K-12 students, ranging from a minimum of three schools to a maximum of 35. The potential for all nominations is 413 schools each year.

Lake Elementary has shown consistently high scores on standardized testing in all academic areas. Lake’s Principal, Donna Bruner, credits her staff, both classified and certified, for the achievement of this recognition. “We are so fortunate to have dedicated, committed and hardworking staff who put our children first”, says Bruner. “We work well as a team, and we love our jobs. We have a supportive community and great parents who also contribute to our students’ success.”

A list of the 2011 National Blue Ribbon Schools is available at http://www.ed.gov/nationalblueribbonschools.