NEWS RELEASES 2009-10 :: SEPTEMBER 25, 2009


Brush Creek Elementary (Madison County Schools) was recently named a 2009 No Child Left Behind Blue Ribbon school by U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. Brush Creek Elementary is among 264 public and 50 private schools nationwide being recognized for helping all students achieve at high levels and for making significant progress in closing the achievement gap.

Brush Creek Elementary School Principal Daniel Metcalf said the staff and students were very excited about being selected a Blue Ribbon School. "We take much pride in our school and strive to create a positive learning environment where academic as well as personal growth is fostered daily. To be nationally recognized validates the hard work of teachers, students, parents and our school community," Metcalf said.

State Superintendent June Atkinson congratulated the staff and students at Brush Creek Elementary for their selection. "I know there is a lot of hard work occurring at Brush Creek Elementary to ensure that every student reaches his or her academic potential. When we challenge our students to achieve at high levels and support them along the way, they can and do exceed our expectations," Atkinson said.

In announcing the schools, Secretary Duncan said, "These Blue Ribbon Schools have shown that all children can learn with appropriate supports. These schools are places where students are challenged to meet high expectations with the active support of teachers, parents and the community."

For the past 27 years, this prestigious program has honored more than 6,100 of the nation’s most successful schools. Schools selected for this prestigious award model excellence in leadership, teaching, curriculum, student achievement and parental involvement. In 2002, Department officials announced that schools singled out for national honors must also reflect the goals of the nation's new education reforms for high standards and accountability found under No Child Left Behind.

Blue Ribbon Schools are selected based on one of two assessment criteria:

  • Schools with at least 40 percent of their students from disadvantaged backgrounds that dramatically improve student performance to high levels on state tests; and
  • Schools whose students, regardless of background, achieve in the top 10 percent of their state on state tests or, in the case of private schools, in the top 10 percent of the nation on nationally-normed tests. In addition, public schools must meet Adequate Yearly Progress in reading and mathematics.
State education departments nominate public schools that meet the rigorous criteria for consideration. Once all nominations are received, the Secretary invites the nominated schools to submit applications for possible recognition as a No Child Left Behind Blue Ribbon School.

Two representatives from each school will be honored during a National Recognition Ceremony scheduled for Nov. 3 in Washington, DC. They will receive a plaque and a flag signifying their No Child Left Behind Blue Ribbon School status.

Additional information regarding the No Child Left Behind Blue Ribbon Schools Program is available online at or by contacting the NCDPI's Communications division at 919.807.3450.

About the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction:
The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction provides leadership to 115 local public school districts and 160 charter schools serving over 1.5 million students in kindergarten through high school graduation. The agency is responsible for all aspects of the state's public school system and works under the direction of the North Carolina State Board of Education.

For more information:
NCDPI Communication and Information Division, 919.807.3450.